Experimental reintroduction of red-cockaded woodpeckers

  • Published source details Rudolph D.C., Conner R.N., Carrie D.K. & Schaefer R.R. (1992) Experimental reintroduction of red-cockaded woodpeckers. The Auk, 109, 914-916.


This study is summarised as evidence for the following.

Action Category

Translocate woodpeckers

Action Link
Bird Conservation

Provide artificial nesting sites for woodpeckers

Action Link
Bird Conservation
  1. Translocate woodpeckers

    A small trial at two open pine woodland sites in Texas, USA (Rudolph et al. 1992), found that, of five translocated red-cockaded woodpeckers Picoides borealis, four remained in their release sites. One pair were moved less than 4 km within the same forest block in February 1991 and the male returned to his original group the next day. The female remained and after a second male (from another forest block) was released the pair nested successfully in both 1991 and 1992. The second pair were translocated from separate sites, released in February 1992 and appeared to remain in the area, using artificial nesting cavities (see ‘Provide artificial nesting sites’ for details). Birds were captured at their roost cavities, transported to the release site and placed in tree cavities approximately 20 m apart. Wire mesh was placed over the cavity entrances until the birds were released at dawn. Prior to translocation, resin wells at the release site were reopened and potential competitors for cavities (e.g. southern flying squirrels Glaucomys volans and red-bellied woodpeckers Melanerpes carolinus) were removed (see ‘Reduce inter-specific competition for nest sites by removing or excluding competitor species’ for details of similar removal programmes).


  2. Provide artificial nesting sites for woodpeckers

    A small trial at two open pine woodland sites in Texas, USA (Rudolph et al. 1992), found that all four translocated red-cockaded woodpeckers Picoides borealis that remained at two release sites (see ‘Translocate individuals’ for details) used artificial nesting cavities provided at the release sites.


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