Hairy Woodpecker, Picoides villosus
Learn more about this species in the Peterson Reference Guide to Woodpeckers of North America.
Introduction to the species
“The Harris’ woodpecker visits the winter troupes only in a patronizing way. He is far too restless and independent to be counted a constant member of any little gossip club, and, except briefly during the mating season and in the family circle, he is rarely to be seen in the company of his own kind.”
-Dawson & Bowles 1909
Ubiquitous, adaptable, and opportunistic, the Hairy Woodpecker epitomizes the North American woodpecker. Coniferous forest landscapes from the Rockies westward frequently support more Hairies than any other woodpecker species. East of the Rockies, the Hairy is less common than it is in the West, but this quintessential woodpecker is still widespread and locally abundant, from the northern treeline south to the Bahamas. And, mountainous regions from Mexico to Panama host still more Hairy Woodpecker populations.
Hairy Woodpecker at nest cavity. Lake Tahoe, California. Filmed by Steve Shunk
Gallery of photos of the Hairy Woodpecker by Steve Shunk
Return to List of Species of North American Woodpeckers page.