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White Breasted Nuthatch

Sitta carolinensis

Description:

The white-breasted nuthatch (Sitta carolinensis) is a small songbird of the nuthatch family which breeds in old-growth woodland across much of temperate North America. It is a stocky bird, with a large head, short tail, powerful bill, and strong feet. The upperparts are pale blue-gray, and the face and underparts are white. It has a black cap and a chestnut lower belly. The nine subspecies differ mainly in the color of the body plumage. Like other nuthatches, the white-breasted nuthatch forages for insects on trunks and branches, and is able to move head-first down trees. Seeds form a substantial part of its winter diet, as do acorns and hickory nuts that were stored by the bird in the fall. The nest is in a hole in a tree, and the breeding pair may smear insects around the entrance as a deterrent to squirrels. Adults and young may be killed by hawks, owls, and snakes, and forest clearance may lead to local habitat loss, but this is a common species with no major conservation concerns over most of its range.

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Scott s
Spotted by
Scott s

Kingston, Ontario, Canada

Spotted on Apr 2, 2015
Submitted on Apr 8, 2015

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