This web page uses its own cookies and the third-party cookies to collect the information which help us make the service as good as possible. By no means is our intention to use it for gathering personal data.

Cookies policy



Common name Lesser spotted woodpecker
Scientific name Dendrocopos minor
Type Forest birds
Status Rarity

Small bird (approx 16 cm or 6.5 in). Very similar appearance to the Great Spotted Woodpecker, although much smaller. Black and white upperparts, darker on the back and whiter on the belly. Black wings with white speckles. Red crown in males and white in females. Short, tapered bill. Black moustachial stripe. Short black tail, with white outermost feathers.


Woodland environment

Where it lives

Woodland species with a preference for stands of deciduous forest, groves, banks and gardens with mature trees. Also present in mixed stands of oak or cork oak groves with Portuguese oaks or chestnut trees.

How it lives

Species resident in its original distribution area (Extremadura and western Sierra Morena), but considered a rarity in the province. The Lesser Spotted Woodpecker breeds in May. Nest in holes of trees drilled for this purpose. One laying of 3 to 8 eggs. It feeds on small invertebrates, especially larvae of xylophagous insects (from the Greek "xylon", "wood"), those that feed on wood. This bird usually occupies the highest stratum of the groves and prefers the new and thinner branches of the trees.

Where it can be seen in Malaga

Very rare bird in Malaga. There are former observations in the Genal valley and the Cortes de la Frontera area, but in the last decades it has not been possible to confirm its presence nor have there been new observations in Malaga.

Curious facts

In Ornithology it is difficult to establish what a small, large or medium bird is. In most cases the term is relative and refers to comparisons with similar species or ones from the same group. In the case of this bird the question is much clearer. The Lesser Spotted Woodpecker is really very small, much smaller than other woodpeckers. To get an idea, it is similar in size to a tit or a sparrow.

Wintering Summer Resident Migration