Northern Flicker

The Northern Flicker is a medium-large woodpecker most often seen on the ground or feeders searching for tasty niblets. Overall brown in color with a streaked back and spotted undersides; western versions have a red stripe extending from the bill, whereas eastern versions have a red patch on the rear of the crown. Flickers are often found in open woodlands and suburban areas. They love to forarge on insects, fruits and berries and are often found at suet feeders in backyards. Their call consists of a sharp “keek!” and a prolonged “week-week-week” or “kik-kik-kik.” Keep your ears tuned and see if you can hear one in your backyard!   

Favorite Foods

Woodpeckerwise® seed with its blend of peanuts, dried fruit, sunflower and tree nuts is a favorite of Northern Flickers. Don’t forget WoodpeckerWise,® BerryWise,® or Insect suet, a tasty and nutritional treat for these
feathered friends!

Perfect Feeders

Suet feeders, paired with any of our seven suet blends, are the preferred feeders for these spotted birds. Our Double Suet Stick, Single Stick or Tailprop Suet feeders are all excellent choices and will draw these clinging birds to perch as they happily munch on this nutritious and filling food source. 


Flickers tend to nest in cavities of dead or live trees usually 8-25 feet up. The nest is lined only with wood chips from the excavation process. Typically a mother flicker produces 6-8 white-colored eggs and the young hatch in 11-13 days. Look for baby flickers spreading their wings 24-28 days after they have hatched as they will continute to stick by their parents for some time.

Did You Know?

Flickers do not act like typical woodpeckers. While other woodpeckers forage for insects and larvae in the cracks and crevices of trees, Flickers forage for insects on the ground with 75% of their diet consisting of animal matter, the majority of which are ants.

Flickers are attracted to water so having a bath at the ready with fresh, clean water is a great way to attract these beautiful birds. Try adding a water wiggler for added enticement.