Greater Spotted Woodpecker
The Greater Spotted Woodpecker has an extremely large range, being found from the UK all across Europe to the Far East. Find out more about the Greater Spotted Woodpecker in our wild bird library.
As well as its distinctive black and white markings, the Greater Spotted Woodpecker can also be recognised by its distinctive bouncing style of flight. Male and female birds have similar colouring, though the female doesn’t have the red patch on the nape of the neck.
They’ll often cling closely to tree trunks and branches, making them tricky to spot when not in flight. However, you may well hear their loud call or the familiar drumming sound in the spring.
Both parents will help with excavating a new nest each spring, typically several metres up in the trees.
Five to seven eggs are laid, usually towards the end of May.
The birds will drill holes up to 10cm deep in order to find insects to eat. They’re particularly partial to ants and the larvae of wood-boring beetles during the summer.
Later in the year, though, they are likely to include a wide variety of nuts, seeds and fruit in their diet.