Now I can appreciate that we now have a politically correctly named Long-tailed Duck on the American continent. And thank you for changing Black-shouldered Kite to White-tailed Kite. After all those Swallow-tailed Kites and Mississippi Kites have black shoulders too. Now I feel more confident that I know what I’m looking at when I see one. And thank you for splitting out those Solitary Vireos. Yes, I got my Blue-headed Vireo here in the east, my Plumbeous Vireo from Colorado (my favorite of the three) and my Cassin’s Vireo in California. That really fleshed out my life list.
But I do have a bone to pick with you guys. Does this look like a “Red-bellied” Woodpecker? Is it me just getting crotchety now that I’m on the positive side of being a semi-centenarian? Seriously, the age of bird-watch with 20 gauge shotguns is over, which is when this bird was named and probably why it had a red belly.
Here are some suggestions. How about Cream-bellied Woodpecker? That would be a conservative change if you insist on being fixated on the belly. Or maybe Chess-board-backed Woodpecker. That gives you an extra hyphen, which I know you guys like and the added bonus of being a tongue twister. (I thought about Checker-backed Woodpecker, but checkers is traditionally played on a red and black board. That would be just silly. Chess is played on a black and white board. Yes, that would be appropriate.)
How about, now tell me if this makes sense or not…Scarlet-headed Woodpecker? Or take a queue from the guys that named the flycatchers…How about Vermillion-headed Woodpecker?
Just sayin’. It would be a better world if we had a Scarlet-headed Woodpecker, now wouldn’t it?