Description - Downy Woodpecker
The downy is the smallest of our woodpeckers. About 15 to 20 centimetres long and 5 centimetres shorter than the look-alike hairy woodpecker, with a white back and white under belly, white spotted black wings a black-and-white-streaked face. The males have an added red on the nape.
Voice of a Downy Woodpecker:
During the breeding season the downy and other woodpecker species do drumming – loud, continuous, very rapid pecking on resonant surfaces such as dead tree stubs. This is done to announce territory and to attract a mate during breeding season.
Habitat of a Downy Woodpecker:
You’ll find these birds in open woodlands, orchards, parks, and backyards.
Mating Habits of a Downy Woodpecker:
During the mating season male woodpeckers of all kinds continually drum to attract the females.
Nesting Habits of a Downy Woodpecker :
This bird excavates its nest cavity in dead wood about 2 to 12 meters above the ground. The female downy woodpecker lays 4 to 5 white eggs which are incubated for 12 days or so, by both male and female. The young will leave the nest 28 to 30 days after hatching.
On Vancouver Island it is usual for the pair to raise 1 brood per season however if the weather is warm for long enough they may raise 2 broods.
Feeding Habits of a Downy Woodpecker:
These woodpeckers feed on insects especially wood-boring insects; they supplement their diets with berries and seeds.