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Home > Haith's Wildlife Blog > Bird food to attract woodpeckers

Bird food to attract woodpeckers

Monday, 17th June 2019

With two hundred species of woodpeckers worldwide it seems slightly unfair that here in the UK we only have three. However, the great spotted woodpecker has now become a common visitor to gardens all over the British Isles, with the exception of Ireland.
Sharing common features such as a round head, long tongue and chisel-like bills they are all striking birds. You may ask how they grip tightly on to rounded branches – that is due to their four toes, two facing forwards and two backward.
 
Green woodpecker
 
Not many of us have green woodpeckers in our gardens - but if you are fortunate to have them as visitors, you will probably see them on the lawn. This is because their diet is mainly ants – eggs, larvae or adults; however, when winter comes, they may visit a bird table for mealworms, suet, and fruit.

Suet range
 
The Great Spotted Woodpecker is widely distributed in England and very noticeable due to its white shoulder patches on either side of its black back.
 
They will happily visit a bird table for sunflower seeds and will even hang upside down trying to extract peanuts from a bird feeder. Hanging suet such as Co-Co fat feeders and suet cakes may also be a firm favourite.


Sunflower Hearts


Peanuts

Great spotted woodpecker
 
In addition to supplementary bird food, you might leave any dead trees/branches in situ as this means a supply of wood-boring grubs – which are their main natural source of food.
 
A word of warning during the breeding season though. Great Spotted Woodpeckers may attack nest boxes that contain eggs and chicks so we advise being cautious and suggest one's purchased from our Schwegler woodcrete range.

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