White-Backed Woodpecker (Dendrocopos leucotos)

White-Backed Woodpecker (Dendrocopos leucotos) (Photo: Nikos Petrou)

The White-Backed Woodpecker is a widespread resident of European temperate forests. It feeds mostly on insects and in some cases nuts and berries, but not during breeding season. Insect prey is mostly obtained by pecking into the wood of dead and rotting deciduous trees. Being strongly dependent on dead or dying trees, its distribution has considerably contracted in Europe following introduction of modern forestry management practices.

The European Union population is considered fragmented and declining. In Greece this species is a widespread but scarce resident and the total population is estimated between 500 and 2,000 pairs.

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