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Green Woodpecker

About Green Woodpecker

Big, long bodied, long-billed woodpecker. Upperparts green with yellow rump, conspicuous in flight; underparts paler. Red crown and nape; wide black eyestripe. Male has red, black-edged mustache, female has all black mustache. Dark gray legs and bill.

This bird breeds in the spring. The bird drills a hole in a tree about 15 inches (38cm) deep. The nest is not lined. The have 4-9 white eggs. The eggs are incubated by both parents for 18-19 days. The chicks are taken care of by both parents.

Woodpeckers are famous for their ability to dig into timber with their sharp bills. They also use their bills to find wood-boring insect grubs. But the Green Woodpecker does this a little different. It eats ants most of the time and is usually foraging in the grass far away from trees. It hops on the ground looking for ant nests, but always on the look out for danger.

In parts of Britain it is known as the yaffle – this is in reference to its ringing, laughing, musical song.

Although these birds prefer to be on their own except during breeding season, they will form strong bonds and sometimes will mate for life.