occurs (regularly, as a native taxon) in multiple nations
Regularity: Regularly occurring
Type of Residency: Year-round
Global Range: RESIDENT from southeastern California, northeastern Baja California, and central Arizona south to southern Baja California and through Sonora to northern Sinaloa (AOU 1983).
Length: 32 cm
Weight: 142 grams
Habitat and Ecology
Comments: "Stands of giant cactus (saguaro), Joshua tree and riparian groves of cottonwood and tree willows in warm desert lowlands and foothills" (AOU 1995). Nesting density positively correlated with volume of ironwood (OLNEYA) in southern Arizona (Kerpez and Smith 1990), where it did not nest in saguaros less than 5 m tall (Kerpez and Smith 1990).
Non-Migrant: Yes. At least some populations of this species do not make significant seasonal migrations. Juvenile dispersal is not considered a migration.
Locally Migrant: No. No populations of this species make local extended movements (generally less than 200 km) at particular times of the year (e.g., to breeding or wintering grounds, to hibernation sites).
Locally Migrant: No. No populations of this species make annual migrations of over 200 km.
Comments: Feeds on insects (ants, beetles, wasps, grasshoppers, grubs, etc). Feeds on the ground or catches insects in the air. Also eats fruits, berries, and seeds (Terres 1980).
Cavities excavated by flickers are used by many species of secondary cavity users.
Life History and Behavior
Incubation by both sexes, lasts 11-12 days. Nestlings are altricial. Young are tended by both adults; leave nest 25-28 days after hatching.
Molecular Biology and Genetics
Statistics of barcoding coverage: Colaptes chrysoides
Public Records: 0
Specimens with Barcodes: 1
Species With Barcodes: 1
IUCN Red List Assessment
Red List Category
Red List Criteria
National NatureServe Conservation Status
Rounded National Status Rank: NNR - Unranked
NatureServe Conservation Status
Rounded Global Status Rank: G5 - Secure
The gilded flicker (Colaptes chrysoides) is a large-sized woodpecker (mean length of 29 cm (11 in)) of the Sonoran, Yuma, and eastern Colorado Desert regions of the southwestern United States and northwestern Mexico including all of the Baja Peninsula except the extreme northwestern region. Golden yellow underwings distinguish the gilded flicker from the northern flicker found within the same region, which have red underwings.
The gilded flicker most frequently builds its nest hole in a majestic saguaro cactus, excavating a nest hole nearer the top than the ground. The cactus defends itself against water loss into the cavity of the nesting hole by secreting sap that hardens into a waterproof structure that is known as a saguaro boot. Northern flickers, on the other hand, nest in riparian trees and very rarely inhabit saguaros. Gilded flickers occasionally hybridize with northern flickers in the narrow zones where their range and habitat overlap.
- BirdLife International (2012). "Colaptes chrysoides". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2013.2. International Union for Conservation of Nature. Retrieved 26 November 2013.
- "Gilded Flicker". National Audubon Society. Retrieved 2011-01-24. "Much of the Gilded Flicker's breeding biology needs study. Nesting begins in early April in the United States, and pair bonds appear to last for the breeding season."
- Mark Elbroch; Eleanor Marie Marks; C. Diane Boretos (2001). Bird tracks and sign. Stackpole Books. p. 311. ISBN 0-8117-2696-7. "Cavities in saguaros are cut out by these birds the year before they are inhabited. The excavated cactus secretes a fluid that hardens into a scab, thus preventing water loss, which could kill the cactus, as well as waterproofing the inside of the next cavity."
Names and Taxonomy
Comments: Formerly included in C. AURATUS (see AOU 1995).