Bizarre and unmistakable small gray woodpecker. Note broad black stripe down middle of crown and back. Cryptic plumage and sluggish habits make it easily overlooked. Favors open country with scattered trees, orchards, farmland; nests in tree cavities. Feeds mostly on the ground, probing with its long tongue for ants; hops with deliberate, rather jerky motions, often twitching its tail and turning its head. Song is a rising series of high, piercing notes, similar to that of a falcon.