Friday, March 7, 2008
Black-rumped Flameback, (Dinopium benghalense), also known as the Lesser Golden-backed Woodpecker, is a woodpecker which is a widespread and common resident breeder in much of South Asia.
This flameback is a species associated with open forest and cultivation. It nests in a tree hole, laying three white eggs.
Like other woodpeckers, this species has a straight pointed bill, a stiff tail to provide support against tree trunks, and zygodactyl or "yoked" feet, with two toes pointing forward, and two backward. The long tongue can be darted forward to capture insects.
The Black-rumped Flameback is a large species at 26-29 cm in length. It is a typical woodpecker shape, and has a golden yellow back, with paler wings. The rump and tail are black. The underparts are white with dark chevron markings. The black throat immediately separates it from other golden backed woodpeckers in the Indian region. The head is whitish with a black nape and throat, and there is a greyish eye patch. Unlike Greater Flameback, Chrysocolaptes lucidus, it has no dark moustache stripe.
The adult male Black-rumped Flameback has a red crown. Females have a dark forecrown, with red only on the rear half. Young birds are like the female, but duller.
The Sri Lankan subspecies D. b. psarodes has a crimson back and all the dark markings are blacker and more extensive. It is sometimes considered a separate species from the nominate Indian form.