yellow-bellied sapsucker

Types of Woodpeckers in Illinois (with Pictures)

There are many different types of woodpeckers that can be found in Illinois. In this blog post, we will discuss the most common types of woodpeckers that live in this state. Woodpeckers are interesting birds that play an important role in our ecosystems. They help to keep trees healthy by eating insects and drilling holes into tree bark. If you live in Illinois, or are planning a trip to this state, be sure to keep an eye out for these beautiful birds!

Only reputable sources and an Ornithologist were consulted to ensure that the information was reliable.

Most Common Woodpeckers in Illinois

Yellow-bellied Sapsucker

Yellow-bellied Sapsuckers Woodpeckers

The Yellow-bellied Sapsucker is a medium-sized woodpecker with a black-and-white striped back, white belly, and yellow breast. They have a red crown that is usually only visible when they are excited or angry.

Male and female Yellow-bellied Sapsuckers look alike. These woodpeckers are found in forests across North America. They prefer to nest in trees, but will also nest in man-made structures such as houses and barns.

Yellow-bellied Sapsuckers are insectivores. They eat insects, larvae, and sap from trees. To get to the sap, they drill small holes in the tree bark. They also eat fruit and berries. In the winter, when insects are scarce, they will eat tree buds.

Yellow-bellied Sapsuckers are known for their loud “sik-sik” calls. They also make a drumming noise on trees with their beaks. This drumming is used to communicate with other sapsuckers and to attract mates.

These woodpeckers are generally shy around humans. However, they will sometimes come close to people if they are attracted to the sap or insects on them.

Northern Flicker

Northern Flickers Woodpeckers

The Northern Flicker is a beautiful bird that is relatively easy to identify. They are unique among woodpeckers in Illinois in a few ways. For one, they are the only species of woodpecker that commonly feeds on the ground. They will also often perch on top of trees or poles instead of clinging to the sides like other woodpeckers.

Flickers are also the only woodpecker in Illinois with a strongly contrasting black and white pattern on their backs. The male also has a red crescent on their nape.

Flickers eat primarily ants and beetles, which they find by digging through the leaf litter on the forest floor. They will also eat berries and fruits. In the winter, when these foods are scarce, they will often visit bird feeders.

Flickers are one of the few woodpeckers that are known to mate for life. Breeding pairs will excavate a nest cavity together in a dead tree or stump.

The female will lay between four and eight eggs, which both parents will help to incubate. Once the chicks hatch, both parents will feed them until they are old enough to fend for themselves.

Red-bellied Woodpecker

Red-bellied Woodpecker

The red-bellied woodpecker is a small to medium-sized bird with a short stout bill. The adult male has a bright red head, neck and breast, while the female has a grayish head and breast.

The back and wings are black with white bars, and the belly is pale yellow. Juveniles are similar to adults but with duller colors. This species is found in woodlands and forests across eastern North America.

The red-bellied woodpecker is a common bird at backyard feeders. It will eat a variety of foods including insects, nuts, and berries. This bird often hangs upside down while feeding on tree trunks or branches. The red-bellied woodpecker will also excavate nesting cavities in trees. Both parents help to raise the young.

This is a fairly noisy bird, often heard before it is seen. The call of the red-bellied woodpecker is a sharp “pik” or “pik-a-pik” sound. The drumming of this bird is a rapid “tuk tuk tuk” noise.

Downy Woodpeckers

Downy Woodpeckers

The Downy Woodpecker is the smallest and most widespread woodpecker in North America. The adult has black and white plumage, a small bill, and a short tail. The male has a red patch on the back of its head, while the female does not.

This bird can be found in woods across Illinois, where it feeds on insects, spiders, and other small invertebrates. It often feeds on the trunks of trees, using its bill to peck at the bark in search of food.

The Downy Woodpecker is a relatively common bird, and it is not considered to be at risk of extinction.

Hairy Woodpecker

Hairy Woodpeckers

Hairy Woodpeckers are one of the largest woodpecker species in North America, and they’re also one of the most widespread.

The Hairy Woodpecker is a black and white bird with a long bill and a rounded head. The back is mostly white, while the wings are black with white spots. The tail is black with white bars. Adults have a red patch on the back of the head.

Hairy Woodpeckers are found in forests across North America. They typically nest in dead trees, but they will also nest in cliffs and buildings. Hairy Woodpeckers eat insects, berries, and nuts.

Hairy Woodpeckers are known for their loud, distinctive calls. They also have a habit of drumming on trees, which is how they got their name. Drumming is used as a way to communicate and attract mates.

If you see a Hairy Woodpecker in your backyard, it’s likely that the bird is looking for food. Hairy Woodpeckers will often eat insects that are attracted to light, such as moths and beetles. They’ll also eat suet, which is a type of bird food made from fat.

red-headed woodpeckers

Redheaded woodpeckers

The red-headed woodpecker is a medium-sized woodpecker with a black body and white wings. The head is entirely red, and there is a large white patch on the back. Juveniles have a brown head and are overall paler than adults.

These birds are found in deciduous forests across North America. They nest in tree cavities and forage on the ground for insects. These woodpeckers are often seen clinging to tree trunks or flying from branch to branch in search of food.

The red-headed woodpecker is a striking bird that is easily identified by its bright red head. This medium-sized woodpecker has a black body and white wings. The head is entirely red, and there is a large white patch on the back. Juveniles have a brown head and are overall paler than adults.

These birds are found in deciduous forests across North America. They nest in tree cavities and forage on the ground for insects. These woodpeckers are often seen clinging to tree trunks or flying from branch to branch in search of food.

Yellow-bellied Sapsucker

Yellow-bellied Sapsucker

The Yellow-bellied Sapsucker is a medium sized woodpecker that ranges in length from 15-19 cm. They are black and white with a yellow breast and belly. The male has a red throat while the female does not. These birds are found in woodlands across North America where they drill small holes in trees to feed on sap.

They will also eat insects, berries, and fruits. You can often hear their loud drumming or their “yank yank” call in the woods. If you are lucky enough to see one of these birds up close, you will notice their long tongue which they use to lap up sap.

Yellow-bellied Sapsuckers are one of the few birds that migrate at night. In the fall, they head south to their wintering grounds in Mexico and Central America. So, if you’re out hiking in the woods this summer, keep your eyes peeled for these fascinating creatures!

Did you know that the Yellow-bellied Sapsucker gets its name from its habit of drilling holes in trees to feed on sap? These birds are found in woodlands across North America and migrate south to their wintering grounds in Mexico and Central America in the fall.

pileated woodpeckers

Pileated Woodpeckers

Pileated woodpeckers are the largest member of the woodpecker family in North America. They are black with white stripes on their face and wings, and a red crest on their head. Males and females look alike. These birds are 15-19 inches long with a wingspan of 26-30 inches.

Pileated woodpeckers are shy birds and are not often seen in urban areas. They prefer to live in forests with large trees. These birds eat insects, fruits, and nuts. They use their long beaks to drill holes in trees to find food. Pileated woodpeckers also make small holes in trees for nesting.

These birds are interesting to watch because of their behavior. They will often hang upside down from a tree while they eat. Pileated woodpeckers are also known for the loud “wuk-wuk-wuk” sound they make. This noise is used to communicate with other birds and warn off predators.

How to attract woodpeckers?

Woodpeckers are attracted to suet, which is a type of bird food made from fat. They’ll also eat insects that are attracted to light, such as moths and beetles. To attract woodpeckers to your yard, try hang a suet feeder from a tree or place it on a pole. You can also put up a birdhouse designed for woodpeckers. Be sure to locate the birdhouse in a tree or on a pole, as these birds do not use nesting boxes on the ground.

What kind of woodpeckers are in Illinois?

The most common woodpeckers in Illinois are the red-headed woodpecker, the yellow-bellied sapsucker, and the pileated woodpecker. These birds are attracted to suet and insects. You can attract them to your yard by hanging a suet feeder or putting up a birdhouse designed for woodpeckers. Be sure to locate the birdhouse in a tree or on a pole.

Are woodpeckers common in Illinois?

Yes, woodpeckers are common in Illinois. The most common species are the red-headed woodpecker, the yellow-bellied sapsucker, and the pileated woodpecker. These birds are attracted to suet and insects. You can attract them to your yard by hanging a suet feeder or putting up a birdhouse designed for woodpeckers.

What does a woodpecker look like in Illinois?

The most common woodpeckers in Illinois are the red-headed woodpecker, the yellow-bellied sapsucker, and the pileated woodpecker. These birds are black with white stripes on their face and wings, and a red crest on their head. Males and females look alike. These birds are 15-19 inches long with a wingspan of 26-30 inches.

What is the biggest woodpecker in Illinois?

The biggest woodpecker in Illinois is the pileated woodpecker.