WatchList Species Account for Gilded Flicker
(Colaptes chrysoides)

Qualifies for the list as a Red List Species


Gilded Flicker
Photo: Bill Hubick

The Gilded Flicker is primarily a ground-foraging species, and was formerly regarded as conspecific with the Yellow-shafted and Red-shafted Flickers. It is a non-migrating resident of the Sonoran Desert in southern Arizona, southeastern California, and adjacent Mexico, including the Baha California peninsula.


In the Sonoran cactus forest, the Gilded Flicker nests primarily in saguaro, but also may use cottonwoods and willows in riparian woodland. Competition with starlings for nest holes in saguaro has apparently had no negative effect on populations of the Gilded Flicker, though it has for the smaller Gila Flicker.


The Gilded Flicker is known to hybridize with the Red-shafted Flicker. Its populations are at least stable and may be increasing. The main threat to this bird is loss of habitat and nest cavities within its quite limited range.