Rufous Woodpecker – juvenile and advertising call

posted in: birds, Morphology-Develop., Vocalisation | 0


I observed a family unit of Rufous Woodpeckers (Micropternus brachyurus) on 10th August 2020 along a primary jungle trail at the Kledang-Sayong Forest Reserve, Ipoh, Perak, Malaysia – an adult female, adult male and one juvenile bird. They were foraging in thick vegetation (I have seen them feeding close to the ground). I could not get close but offering some images of the juvenile (above and below).


Earlier on May 28th 2020 at the urban environment in Ipoh, I had an opportunity to listen to another Rufous Woodpecker make advertising calls, from a perch. Calls are a loud peal of notes that come out in a burst, often uttered 20-30 seconds apart (or longer). They vary in number of notes and duration. The ones I recorded had 11 notes but I have heard a range of 8-12 notes (Wells 1999 says 4-16, commonly around 8; Birds of the World says up to 16 notes). The duration of the full call I recorded was 1.35 seconds but have heard durations of 1.5-1.7 seconds. There is a slight up lift then a decrescendo component to the call. A sonogram and a waveform are shown below – note the layered natured of the calls, spanning a large frequency range of 1-21 kHz. I guess this is what it really means to ‘cover all your bases’.

A sonogram and a waveform.

Call recording here:


Amar-Singh HSS (Dato’ Dr) – Ipoh, Perak, Malaysia

Equipment: Equipment: Nikon D500 SLR with Nikon AF-S Nikkor 500mm f/5.6E PF ED VR, handheld with Rode VideoMic Pro Plus Shotgun Microphone

Follow BESG:

Latest posts from

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.