Brown-headed Nuthatches

Adult Brown-headed Nuthatch

Adult Brown-headed Nuthatch

The Brown-headed Nuthatch has declined to the point that the species is listed as a conservation concern in most states in which it still breeds. Brown-headed Nuthatches occupy year-round territories and often are over-looked in bird surveys because they do not use broadcast vocalizations to defend territories. Much like the Red-cockaded Woodpecker, nuthatches excavate cavities used by other species, forage by gleaning arboreal insects on limbs and boles, and breed cooperatively in groups that may contain up to five adults.

Our current research projects focus on filling information gaps relating to cooperative breeding in this species, status and management issues on public lands, and assessing genetic characteristics of increasingly fragmented populations throughout Florida. Nuthatches do not colonize areas very readily once extirpated, and limits to dispersal may influence genetic traits for some populations.

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