Site address
(not postal)

Woodcroft Wildspace
Downes Court


N21 3PT

Great Spotted Woodpecker (Dendrocopos major)

This bird has a striking black-and-white plumage. The male has a distinctive red patch on the back of the head and young birds have a red crown. Its bouncing flight is easily recognised. The adult bird is 22-23 cm long and has a wingspan of 34-39 cm. When fully grown it weighs 70-100g.

The great spotted woodpecker is found anywhere where there are mature trees with suitable holes for nesting. It likes broad leaved trees but it can live on mature conifers. It will live in parks and gardens and will feed from bird tables and peanut feeders. It spends most of its time clinging to tree trunks and branches, and will try to hide on the other side of the tree when aware of being watched by humans. It can be seen all year round.

The natural diet is insects, seeds and nuts.

It has a loud call which sounds like 'kik kik' and in the spring it makes a sound by drumming on the tree.

The great spotted woodpecker lays 4-7 eggs which hatch in 10-13 days. The young fledge at 20-24 days.

The maximum lifespan is 10 years.

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