Shafted? This refers to the tail feathers (shafts). The color of the shafts are visible when the bird is in flight.
The red shafted Flicker's range extends from Canada to Mexico. The yellow shafted Flicker is found in Texas, New Mexico and Mexico.
Some red shafted Flickers migrate to northern parts of their range in spring where they mate, raise a brood or two before heading south in the fall.
Individual birds typically return to the same area year after year and often to the same tree where they drilled a hole for a nest the previous year (sometimes they use the same hole, sometimes they drill a new one).
The males and the females travel in separate flocks of up to one hundred birds. When they get to the breeding grounds, the males drum their beaks on trees and sing to call to his mate. Flickers usually mate for life but the couple are only close for a few months of the year, during breeding season.
After mating has been accomplished, the female lays 7-9 eggs. Both parents incubate the eggs and care for the young. Unlike other Woodpeckers who feed the nestlings live bugs, the Flicker feeds by regurgitation.
Flickers eat bugs mostly- ants and beetles are favorites- which the Flicker digs out of the ground with his bill. When the youngsters are a couple months old, they are able to dig their own bugs.
The Flicker's habitat is open woodlands, suburbs (red shafted) cactus country, desert woodlands (yellow shafted).