As currently classified, Strickland's Woodpecker includes 2 distinct assemblages of taxa that were formerly treated as separate species and might still deserve that recognition (Am. Ornithol. Union 1998, RRJ, JDL). The Arizona Woodpecker (arizonae group) is the more widespread of the 2 groups and is found in mid-elevation pine-oak woodland from southeastern Arizona and southwestern New Mexico south along Mexico's Sierra Madre Occidental to Jalisco and then eastward along the southern rim of the Mexican plateau to the state of Michoacán. The second assemblage, which is the older-named and thus bears the species name, Strickland's Woodpecker (stricklandi group), is more restricted and fragmented in its range, extending disjunctly from the arizonae group along the Central Volcanic Belt eastward to Veracruz at high elevation in open pine woodland. This account focuses mainly on the Arizona Woodpecker because of the shortage of information about the stricklandi group.
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