Lesser Goldenback Woodpecker (Dinopium benghalense)

Also called the Black-Rumped Woodpecker, it is the only woodpecker with a black rump and throat. It is found throughout the subcontinent in urban as well as rural areas. They are often seen in trees in cities and towns throughout India.

An important feature in woodpeckers that enable them to climb trees and feed on insects in a vertical position are the ‘zygodactyl’ feet with two toes pointing forward and two toes backward. It’s long tongue is useful to capture insects from under the bark of trees.

The picture is of an adult male, with its red crest and crown. Females have the red colour only at the rear of the crest. They can be easily tracked and seen by their loud ‘ki-ki-ki-ki’ call that steadily increases in pace and ends with a trill. They nest in cavities in trees and breed from spring through to the monsoons.

Lesser Goldenbacks are often found in pairs or larger groups, so if you see one in your garden or neighbourhood, keep a lookout for more of them nearby.

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