The Downy Woodpecker is the smallest woodpecker in North America. Their breeding habitat is forested areas, mainly deciduous, across most of North America to Central America. They nest in a tree cavity, excavated by the nesting pair in a dead tree or limb. The Downy Woodpecker can also be found east of Newfoundland and Labrador, on the islands of Saint-Pierre and Miquelon.
These birds are mostly permanent residents. Northern birds may migrate further south; birds in mountainous areas may move to lower elevations. Downy Woodpeckers roost in tree cavities in the winter.
Downy Woodpeckers forage on trees, picking the bark surface in summer and digging deeper in winter. They mainly eat insects, also seeds and berries.