Black Woodpecker

About the Black Woodpecker

Also known as: Great Black Woodpecker

The Black Woodpecker is a large (approximately 18 inches long) species of woodpecker that lives across northern parts of Eurasia. The species is expanding westward into northwest Europe.

Black Woodpeckers have an overall black body plumage, with a red crown. In males the red extends over the entire top of the head; in females the red only appears in the back. The feathers end in a scraggly crest at the back of the head.

Black Woodpeckers prefer to nest in old forests, using tree cavities for nesting. They feed on insects found by drilling into dead tree bark.

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Details & Statistics

Added to Birdorable
Hatched on 01 August 2010
Scientific Name
Dryocopus martius
  • Piciformes
  • Picidae
  • Dryocopus
  • D. martius
Birdorable Family
Conservation Status
Least Concern (as of 20 March 2020)
  • Least Concern (LC)
  • Near Threatened (NT)
  • Vulnerable (VU)
  • Endangered (EN)
  • Critically Endangered (CR)
  • Extinct in the Wild (EW)
  • Extinct (EX)
Source: IUCN Red List
Units: Imperial / Metric
17.7 to 18.5 inches
25.2 to 30.7 inches


International Names

Czech (Cesky) datel černý
Danish (Dansk) Sortspætte
Dutch (Nederlands) Zwarte Specht
Finnish (Suomi) palokärki
French (Français) Pic noir
German (Deutsch) Schwarzspecht
Italian (Italiano) Picchio nero
Japanese (日本語) クマゲラ (kumagera)
Korean (한국어) 가막딱다구리
Norwegian (Norsk) Svartspett
Polish (Polski) dzięcioł czarny
Russian (русский язык) Черный дятел
Spanish (Español) Picamaderos Negro
Swedish (Svenska) Spillkråka
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The Black Woodpecker, Dryocopus martius, is native to northern parts of Eurasia. They can be identified by their large size (about 18 inches long) and their all-black plumage. Black Woodpeckers sport a ... more