Ivory-billed Woodpecker

About the Ivory-billed Woodpecker
Ivory-billed Woodpecker

The Ivory-billed Woodpecker is one of the largest woodpecker species in the world and extremely rare member of the woodpecker family, Picidae. It is officially listed as an endangered species, but by the end of the 20th century had widely been considered extinct.

Reports of at least one male bird in Arkansas in 2004 and 2005 were reported in April 2005 by a team led by the Cornell Laboratory of Ornithology.

The bird is shiny blue-black with extensive white markings on its neck and on both the upper and lower trailing edges of its wings. It has a pure white bill and displays a prominent top crest, red in the male and black in the female. These characteristics distinguish it from the smaller and darker-billed Pileated Woodpecker. Its drum is a single or double rap, and its alarm call, a kent or hant, sounds like a toy trumpet repeated in a series or as a double note.

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Details & Statistics


The Ivory-billed Woodpecker is listed as Critically Endangered on the IUCN Red List and was last assessed in 2015 by BirdLife International. Strong claims for this species's persistence in Arkansas and Florida (USA) have emerged since 2004 although the evidence remains highly controversial. It may also survive in south-eastern Cuba, but there have been no confirmed records since 1987 despite many searches. If extant, the global population is likely to be tiny, and for these reasons it is treated as Critically Endangered.

International Names