Hairy & Downy Woodpeckers

hairy woodpecker

Hairy and downy woodpeckers (Picoides villosus and Picoides pubescens)

While these two look alike and are both common visitors to feeders, the downy is a smaller version of the hairy. The easiest way to differentiate between the two species is the length of the bill in proportion to the head. On the hairy, it is substantial, appearing almost the same length as the head, whereas the downy’s bill is only about one-third of its head length. Both nest in tree cavities, so having some dead and dying trees around the property will help keep these birds around throughout the year. Woodpeckers are attracted to suet balls and peanut butter logs. A heavy-gauge metal silo feeder with shelled peanuts has also proven very attractive to downy woodpeckers.

Take a look through the photo gallery below to see some pictures contrasting the physical differences between these two species.

Upcoming Events

Jul
17
Mon
9:00 am Nature Discovery Week 1
Nature Discovery Week 1
Jul 17 @ 9:00 am – Jul 21 @ 3:00 pm
This camp will introduce the children to the woods, stream and native tree nursery that surround our Nature Center. The campers will delight in learning to use all their senses to understand the natural world,
Jul
24
Mon
9:00 am Becoming a Naturalist Week 2
Becoming a Naturalist Week 2
Jul 24 @ 9:00 am – Jul 28 @ 3:00 pm
This camp builds on the camper’s ability to encounter and describe the natural world. They will use journals, collecting equipment, and take part in many fun activities that will expand their understanding of how to
Jul
29
Sat
10:00 am Tracking the Mammals of PEI
Tracking the Mammals of PEI
Jul 29 @ 10:00 am – 12:00 pm
A walk and talk looking at the native and introduced mammals still found on PEI, as well as a brief look at some of the mammals we’ve lost. After a brief presentation, we’ll head off