Backyard Birds

Grey Woodpeckers

The Grey Woodpecker (Dendropicos goertae) is a widespread and frequently common resident breeder in much of equatorial Africa.

This species is associated with forests and bushes.

It is frequently seen, and regularly taps or drums.

Description:

The Grey Woodpecker has a straight pointed bill, a stiff tail to provide support against tree trunks, and zygodactyl or “yoked” feet, with two toes pointing forward, and two backward.

This bird is about 8 inches or 20cm long.

It is a typical woodpecker shape and has unmarked green upperparts and a pale grey head and underparts. The rump is red, and there is a small red belly patch. The short tail is blackish.

The adult male Grey Woodpecker has a red crown.

Females have a plain grey head, lacking the red crown.

Young birds are like the female, but the reds are paler, and there may be some flank barring.

Diet:

Grey Woodpecker’s mainly eat insects. The long tongue dart quickly forward to capture insects

Nesting

Grey Woodpeckers typically nest in tree holes – often in Oil Palms. The average clutch consists of 2 to 4 eggs.

Call / Song:

The call is a loud and fast peet-peet-peet-peet.


Member of the Picidae Family: WoodpeckersSapsuckersFlickers

 
 
 

Gordon Ramel

Gordon is an ecologist with two degrees from Exeter University. He's also a teacher, a poet and the owner of 1,152 books. Oh - and he wrote this website.

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