Male (Eastern) © Evan Lipton eBird S34107464 Macaulay Library ML 47227441
Male (Pacific) © Grace Oliver
Female (Eastern) © Scott Martin
Female (Pacific) © John F. Gatchet
Juvenile © Jeff Langford
+ 5
Female (Pacific) © Ryan Merrill
Male (Eastern) © Matthew Plante
Female (Eastern) © Doug Swartz
Habitat © Mike Thelen

Downy Woodpecker Dryobates pubescens

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Tiny woodpecker, common and widespread across much of North America. Black-and-white plumage is nearly identical to the larger Hairy Woodpecker. Focus on the bill: Downy has a very short bill, much shorter than the length of the head. Also note the small black markings on the white outer tail feathers. Pacific population has smaller white spots on the wing and a grayer body than Eastern birds. Occurs in any wooded habitat, though western birds are more restricted to riparian areas. Often forages on smaller branches than Hairy Woodpecker. Familiar visitor to backyard feeders, especially fond of suet. Calls include a soft “pik!” and descending rattle, weaker than Hairy Woodpecker.