The Red-breasted Sapsucker distribution range is considerably smaller than those of the Downy and Hairy Woodpeckers. In the Puget Sound area, the Red-breasted Sapsucker can be found year round, although some populations are migratory. This species is more sensitive to ambient temperature fluctuations than the other four species of woodpeckers in this region. During extreme cold snaps, some birds may leave the higher elevations and go to the lowlands.
Red-breasted Sapsucker is named for its red breast and the sapwells it creates.
This bird is considered a keystone species because a multitude of other bird and mammal species benefit from both the sapwells and nest cavities it makes.
Males and females participate in both calling and drumming. This is true for all five of the woodpecker species presented. See Red-breasted Sapsucker Vocalization.