8 Species of Woodpeckers in Pennsylvania You May Come Across

The Picadae family of birds includes woodpeckers, which have over 230 species spread across five continents. But few locations are better suited for woodpeckers than Pennsylvania’s densely forested and marshy areas. In this article, you will know about the 8 Species of Woodpeckers in Pennsylvania.

You can see a variety of woodpeckers in Pennsylvania, no matter where you live. The majority of individuals are taken aback by the abundance of species in their immediate surroundings.

Although the continental US is home to many different species of woodpeckers, for the purposes of this discussion, we will concentrate on the eight species found in the Keystone State. 

8 Species of Woodpeckers in Pennsylvania

1. Yellow-Bellied Sapsucker

The sapsuckers are a unique, small species of woodpecker that is only found in North America. There are just four varieties, and only the yellow-bellied is found in eastern North America; the other three are found in the West.

2. Red-Headed Woodpecker

There are many attributes that best describe the red-headed woodpecker, but their resilience is their greatest quality. They are ferocious survivors and among the few woodpeckers known to hide food by covering it with bark or wood. 

3. Hairy Woodpecker

The distinctive large white stripe down the middle of the back of a Hairy Woodpecker is one of its distinguishing features. Their black eye markings complement the black crown that adorns its head, giving them an almost mask-like appearance. Their wings are black with sporadic white spots, and their belly and tail are white.

Read more: 8 Species of Hawks in North Carolina (Pictures and Info)

4. Downy Woodpecker

The smallest species of woodpeckers in North America are called downy woodpeckers. Their proportionately smaller, chisel-like bills contrast with their blocky heads and upright stance when perched on tree branches, giving them a similar silhouette to larger woodpeckers.

5. Northern Flicker

The fiery, high-pitched call of the northern flicker gives rise to its name. This bird can become vocal with its high-pitched call anywhere from two to seven times per minute. Though there are other factors as well, such as its preference for hunting near the ground over the air or on tree branches, this woodpecker is certainly unique.

6. Red-Bellied Woodpecker

Red-bellied Woodpeckers can be found in a variety of woodlands and forests, including those with young and old hardwood deciduous trees and pine trees. They can be found all year round in Pennsylvania, and their population might be gradually growing. 

7. Pileated Woodpecker

The largest species of woodpecker in North America is the pileated woodpecker, which is comparable in size to an American Crow. They have black and white plumage over the majority of their bodies, with bright red, triangular crests atop their heads. 

8. Black-Backed Woodpecker

The black-backed woodpecker is not a native of Pennsylvania, in contrast to the other woodpeckers on this list. Rather, it is a guest who will show up if everything is in order. These circumstances are burned forests, ideally ones that have burned down recently. Actually, they are just drawn to forests that are prone to fire in general. 

What is the Largest Woodpecker in Pennsylvania?

The largest woodpeckers in Pennsylvania are pileated. Their dimensions range from 15 to 19 inches, and they weigh 8 to 13 ounces with 26 to 30 inches of wing span. This woodpecker from Pennsylvania has a 13-year lifespan. 

Your best chance of seeing pileated woodpeckers in Pennsylvania is in forested areas. However, when they’re hunting, you might see them soaring over wide-open spaces. 


Pennsylvania is home to seven different species of woodpeckers, all of which have adapted well to the state’s environment. While not all woodpecker species in Pennsylvania migrate south for the winter, the few that do appear to winter in the same general area year after year.

This is because Pennsylvania’s suburban areas and woods are ideal habitats for the woodpecker species that calls the state home. The native insects, berries, nuts, and plant material are all consumed by the woodpecker species that can be found in Pennsylvania.

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