Male vs Female Woodpecker: Complete Difference Explained

Male vs Female Woodpecker

Male and female woodpeckers have similar appearances, but males have a bright red spot on the back of their heads, whilst females have a black patch.

The small, nub-like bill, which is less than half the length of the bird’s head, is another trait to watch for females.

White stripes across the face and down the neck of a large woodpecker with a red crown. Females have the same red crest as males, but no red cheek stripe.

Furthermore, the majority of their underbelly is white. The primary remiges are white, and the secondary remiges are black.

The plumage of adult male and female woodpeckers is similar. The patterns on juveniles are fairly similar, although they have a grey head.

Male and female woodpeckers are both black, red, and white, unlike many other bird species that have a distinct color difference between the sexes. Their profiles are quite similar.

Male vs Female Woodpecker: Different Species

Hairy woodpeckers

Hairy Woodpecker

Only the male hairy woodpeckers make nest holes for nesting, although both male and female woodpeckers tap into trees in quest of ants and other delectable insects.

The female will assist in putting the finishing touches on the nest and organizing leftover wood chips as she prepares to lay her eggs at the conclusion of the three to six-week endeavor.

Downy Woodpeckers

downy woodpecker

A red patch on the back of the head distinguishes male Downy Woodpeckers. In addition, they are smaller than Hairy Woodpeckers. The red patch on the head of female Downy Woodpeckers is absent.

Red-bellied Woodpecker

Male Red-bellied Woodpecker has a red coloring on the top of the head and along the back of the neck of woodpeckers. Only the back of the neck and not the top of the head is red in female Red-bellied Woodpeckers.

Pileated Woodpeckers


A red patch on the cheek of male Pileated Woodpeckers may be seen. The red spot on the cheek of female Pileated Woodpeckers is absent.

The crest is the most noticeable distinction. While both the male and female crests are fiery red and triangle-shaped, the male’s is longer and extends all the way to the beak, whilst the female does not reach past the forecrown.

Northern Flickers

Northern Flickers have a mustache that goes from the beak to the neck and is either black or red depending on whether they are from the eastern or western states. The female Northern Flicker lacks a mustache.’

Yellow-bellied Sapsucker

yellow bellied sapsucker

The male Yellow-bellied Sapsucker has a red neck, while the females’ are white. The throats of male Yellow-bellied Sapsuckers are crimson. Yellow-bellied Sapsucker females have white throats.

Acorn Woodpeckers

Male Acorn Woodpeckers have a red crown that goes all the way to the top of their heads and meets the white of their faces. Acorn Woodpecker females have a smaller red crown that is completely encircled by black.

Red-headed Woodpeckers

Male and female Red-headed Woodpeckers have the same appearance. Juveniles, on the other hand, are brown and do not have redheads. If you see a drab woodpecker with a Red-headed Woodpecker, it’s most likely a mother and her young ones.

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