<< Previous Next >>

Downy Woodpecker

Downy Woodpecker
Photo Information
Copyright: jeanpaul Bolduc (jeanpaul) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2097 W: 99 N: 3518] (14962)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2009-10-11
Categories: Birds
Camera: Pentax *ist D, 70-300mm f4-5.6
Exposure: f/5.7, 1/350 seconds
Photo Version: Original Version
Date Submitted: 2010-01-21 14:40
Viewed: 4510
Points: 50
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note [French]
Downy Woodpecker
Phylum: Chordata

Class: Aves

Order: Piciformes

Family: Picidae

Genus: Picoides

Species: P. pubescens

The Downy Woodpecker, Picoides pubescens, is the smallest woodpecker in North America. Adults are mainly black on the upper parts and wings, with a white back, throat and belly and white spotting on the wings. There is a white bar above the eye and one below. They have a black tail with white outer feathers barred with black. Adult males have a red patch on the back of the head.

The female lacks the red patch on the back of the head.It is virtually identical in plumage pattern to the much larger Hairy Woodpecker, but it can be told from the Hairy by the presence of black spots on its white tail feathers. These species are not very closely related, and they are likely to be separated in different genera (Weibel & Moore, 2005; Moore et al., 2006); the outward similarity is a spectacular example of convergent evolution. Why they evolved this way cannot be explained with confidence; it may be relevant that the species exploit rather different-sized foodstuffs and do not compete very much ecologically.

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.

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. In winter, especially, Downy Woodpeckers can often be found in treed suburban backyards and will feed on suet at birdfeeders.

CeltickRanger, loot, Argus, siggi, Miss_Piggy, eng55, JoseMiguel, uleko, anel, horias, roges, Noisette, maurydv, Dis. Ac., anemone, jaycee, mlines, brech has marked this note useful
Only registered TrekNature members may rate photo notes.
Add Critique [Critiquing Guidelines] 
Only registered TrekNature members may write critiques.
You must be logged in to start a discussion.

Critiques [Translate]

I don`t know JeanPaul, but everything here is just perfect: the photo, the frame, the note. Lucky shot or a very skilled person behind the camera? I incline towards the latter one:)
Thank you very much,

Merci Jean Paul pour les vôtres aimables commentaires !
Je treuve dificile de trevailler avec des oiceaux,
mais les insectes de cettes especies restent tranquilles normalement :-)
Muy bonito tu trabajo, fruto de la paciencia, experiencia y la técnica.
Bellos colores y sacando muy buen partido a esa lente.
Un abrazo desde España: Josep Ignasi.

bonjour Jean-Paul

il y a longtemps que j'avais vu une photo de toi !
excellente photo en colose-up de ce pic mineur
avec un excellent POV, superbe focus netteté
et détails et un background joliment flouté, TFS


Hi JeanPaul,

A really nice shot on this Downy Woodpecker. Very well composed and framed. Perfect OOF background. Excellent work!


  • Great 
  • loot Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5524 W: 722 N: 4163] (11276)
  • [2010-01-21 19:23]

Hi Jean Paul

It is great to see a new posting from you my friend. An image of 2 halves; one side the
tree trunk and the other side we have the lovely pensive Downy Woodpecker. Looks
like the little bird got stuck in its thoughts. Carry on pecking the wood or posing for the
man with the camera. Looks like the last thought won as the bird seems to be frozen
for this shot. The little woodpecker stands out nicely against the OOF green BG and
the birds plumage reveals good details.

Well done and TFS.

  • Great 
  • Argus Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5038 W: 260 N: 15594] (50626)
  • [2010-01-21 22:26]

Bonjour Jean-Paul,
Welcome back to TN!
Nice to see such a close-up of a juvenile Downy Woodpecker taken in a fine pose on the tree trunk to show the details of its plumage with nice sharpness and colours against the contrasting OOF natural BG. The lateral POV is perfect.
Merci pour le partage,

  • Great 
  • siggi Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3097 W: 109 N: 12399] (52850)
  • [2010-01-21 23:04]

Hello JeanPaul.
Lovely portrait of this woodpecker. The exposure is just right and the details are very sharp. Great POV and composition. TFS.Best regards Siggi

Hallo Jean-Paul
What a beauty is this Downy Woodpecker and how well did you capture its fine features. It is such a pleasure to look at work that is done with so much pride and neatness, just as the image I see in front of me. This is a beautiful composition with amazing detail and lovely colours. I like the radiant green background in the one half of the image in comparison to the brown of the tree. The details captured of the tree’s trunk add to the speciality of this already special image. I like the patch of red on the bird's head. It reminds me of the caps the Jewish men wear. Thanks for sharing. Kind regards.

  • Great 
  • eng55 Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1256 W: 42 N: 1976] (5892)
  • [2010-01-21 23:48]

Hi Jean Paul,
Excellent capture of this woodpacker.Excellent sharpness,clarity and details.POV,exposure and pose of bird are also wonderful.
Thanks for posting..

Hi Jean Paul,
A high quality capture of this D. Woodpecker.
It's so enjoyable all fine details got on the plumage, its patterns and colours.
The deep green at the background adds a lot of visual impact, very nicely blurred.
Great work and thanks for share it,

  • Great 
  • uleko Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3396 W: 172 N: 3310] (10940)
  • [2010-01-22 2:13]

Hello JeanPaul,
Good to see a post from you again showing a very fine view of a Downy Woodpecker! Excellent sharpness and colours that stand out against the green background. I expect you were a bit too close as the tail got cut off, but nevertheless a fine composition.
TFS and regards, Ulla

Hi Jean Paul
Nice presentation of this Downy Woodpecker in his natural environment. I saw this kind of Woodpecker on my last visit to Canada (Nova Scotia)

  • Great 
  • anel Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 3053 W: 3 N: 8715] (40574)
  • [2010-01-22 4:12]

Bonjour Jeanpaul,
Je vois qu'il y a toujours des pics près de chez toi! Un oiseau si photogénique, dont tu nous présentes une image très harmonieuse et bien construite. Contente de revoir un de tes images. Cela faisait longtemps..

  • Great 
  • PeterZ Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5137 W: 166 N: 13121] (49139)
  • [2010-01-22 6:36]

Hello JeanPaul,
Excellent and very beautiful photo of this Downy Woodpecker. Great sharpness, details, colours and POV. Fantastic contrasting OOF BG. Good composition.

  • Great 
  • horias Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 837 W: 58 N: 2084] (11033)
  • [2010-01-22 8:37]

Hi Jeanpaul
What a lovely woodpecker!
Colors are beautiful, fantastic sharpness details.

  • Great 
  • roges Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 957 W: 0 N: 1329] (6264)
  • [2010-01-22 10:47]

Hi JeanPaul,
are perfectly willing to Nelu Goia, this picture is great.
Framing, details, BG's and the colors are first class.
My warm congratulations.
have a pleasant weekend,

bonjour Jeanpaul
il n'y a pas longtemps , j'ai pensé à vous, en me demandant ce que vous êtes devenu, et c'est un grand plaisir de voir une photo de vous sur TN
ce pic mineur est superbe capturé dans une pose classique pour cette espèce
les details, la luminosité et le fonds vert sont excellents
Je vous souhaite un bon WE

Ciao Jeanpaul,
une très belle image de ce Pic très bien mis en scene sur le tronc, tu sais si bien mettre en valeur ce très beau oiseau, bonne netteté et magnifiques couleurs, j'aime beaucoup cette image.
Merci et félicitions
Bonne soirée

That's a wonderful bird, Jean Paul, you captured this shy one very good with pretty sharpness and we can see every detail, thanks.
Sabine - wishnugaruda

Hello Jeanpoul.
Great photo of this lovely Woodpecker. Light, details and composition are splendid.
Best regards

Hi, Jean-Paul.
Well captured, nice colors, with the stylish frame, exellent.


  • Great 
  • jaycee Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2454 W: 10 N: 8044] (25460)
  • [2010-01-23 15:47]

Hi Jeanpaul,

It's so nice to see you back on TN - I have missed you. This Downy Woodpecker is beautiful with marvelous colors, details and textures. I love the typical pose on the tree and the lovely background and composition.


Salut Jean-Paul,
Quelle superbe composition! Les couleurs, la netteté, l'arrière-plan d'un beau vert sont excellents. L'ensemble est vraiment harmonieux. Bravo!
Je te souhaite une excellente fin de semaine,

Hi Jeanpaul, A wonderful clear photo of this colourful bird, surely birds exemplify the elegance of nature. My goal is to take a few photos of this quality! Good frame enhances the subject too. TFS. Murray.

  • Great 
  • EOSF1 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1393 W: 119 N: 5267] (23955)
  • [2010-04-03 11:34]

Salut Jeanpaul! Superbe image du Pic mineur, les détails, la netteté, le background et la composition sont tous supers! Bravo et merci!


Calibration Check