Yellow-tufted Woodpecker (Melanerpes cruentatus)

Yellow-tufted Woodpecker

[order] PICIFORMES | [family] Picidae | [latin] Melanerpes cruentatus | [UK] Yellow-tufted Woodpecker | [FR] Pic a chevron d’or | [DE] Gelbbrauen-Specht | [ES] Carpintero Azulado | [NL] Geelbrauwspecht


Monotypic species

Physical charateristics

The yellow-tufted woodpecker has distinguishable yellow streak of feathers on the back of its head. Head, breast and wings blue-black. Lower back and uppertail coverts white with a red patch on lower breast and belly. Sides of body barred black with yellowish. Female has a crimson nape. Different morphs exist from shiny yellow head markings to all black heads.

Listen to the sound of Yellow-tufted Woodpecker

[audio: Woodpecker.mp3]

Copyright remark: Most sounds derived from xeno-canto

wingspan min.: 0 cm wingspan max.: 0 cm
size min.: 19 cm size max.: 20 cm
incubation min.: 0 days incubation max.: 0 days
fledging min.: 0 days fledging max.: 0 days
broods: 0   eggs min.: 0  
      eggs max.: 0  


South America : Amazonia


Rainforest, secondary growth, forest edges and sometimes near towns and houses. Often seen in dead tall trees.


Social breeding with adult parents and helpers. The latter may support up to three nests. Nest is excavated in tall dead tree, nestlings are fed the entire social group, fledglings supported by one or more individuals. No details on clutch size and incubation and fledging period.

Feeding habits

Mainly fruit and seeds, also insects (wasps, bees, flies etc.) gleaned and pecked from trees. Most often forages in small noisy groups in tall dead trees.


This species has an extremely large range, and hence does not approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the range size criterion (Extent of Occurrence <20,000 km2 combined with a declining or fluctuating range size, habitat extent/quality, or population size and a small number of locations or severe fragmentation). The population trend appears to be stable, and hence the species does not approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population trend criterion (>30% decline over ten years or three generations). The population size has not been quantified, but it is not believed to approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population size criterion (<10,000 mature individuals with a continuing decline estimated to be >10% in ten years or three generations, or with a specified population structure). For these reasons the species is evaluated as Least Concern.
Yellow-tufted Woodpecker status Least Concern


Sedentary throughout range.

Distribution map

Yellow-tufted Woodpecker distribution range map

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