About the size of the Northern Cardinal, the Red-cockaded Woodpecker (Picoides borealis) is approximately 20-22 cm long, with a wingspan of about 35 cm.
Its back is barred with black and white horizontal stripes.
The Red-cockaded Woodpecker's most distinguishing feature is a black cap and nape that encircle large white cheek patches.
Rarely visible, except perhaps during the breeding season and periods of territorial defense, the male has a small red streak on each side of its black cap called a cockade, hence its name.
The Red-cockaded Woodpecker feeds primarily on ants, beetles, cockroaches, caterpillars, wood-boring insects, and spiders, and occasionally fruit and berries.