Verification of Unusual Sight Record
For Utah

Rec. # 201

Common name:

Red-breasted Sapsucker

Scientific name: Sphyrapicus ruber
Date: 01-22-2012
Time:  ~ 12:30p
Length of time observed: 5 minutes1
Number: 1
Age: Adult
Sex: Male ?
Location: Beaver Dam Wash
County: Washington
Latilong: 19
Elevation: ~ 850
Distance to bird: 10-15m
Optical equipment: 8x42 binoculars
Weather: clear
Light Conditions: mid-day, partially shaded
Description:        Size of bird:  
(Description:)       Basic Shape:  
(Description:)  Overall Pattern:  
(Description:)            Bill Type:  
Field Marks and
Identifying Characteristics:
I observed a Red-breasted Sapsucker working sapwells on a cottonwood tree along the east edge of the Beaver Dam Wash a couple miles below the Lytle / Big Cottonwood Ranch road crossing.

Red head with black eye and limited black feathering surrounding eye and small white spot behind eye. White loral area extending from immediately above bill downward to below front of eye. Remainder of head deep red including crown and nape, extending to throat and breast. Undersides yellow; sides with indistinct black barring. Black back with two distinct narrow rows of vertical gold bars. Wings black with white secondary bar and limited white flecking on primaries. Tail black with black and white bars on middle rectrices and white undertail coverts.
(see photo)
Song or call & method of delivery: none heard
Behavior: feeding on sapwells about 10 m up on cottonwood
Habitat: desert riparian
Similar species and how
were they eliminated:
Distinguished from Red-naped, Yellow-bellied, and hybrid sapsuckers by solid red head, limited facial pattern, sparse back pattern, and lack of black crescent on breast and black feathering on nape.
Previous experience with
this & similar species:
References consulted:  
Description from: Notes made later
Observer: Rick Fridell
Observer's address: Hurricane, UT
Observer's e-mail address: **
Other observers who independently identified this bird:  
Date prepared: 07-07-2012
Additional material: Photo
Additional_Comments: I believe this was of the ruber subspecies due to yellow undersides, limited white on face, and limited and golden barring on back.