Middle Spotted Woodpecker
The Middle Spotted Woodpecker, Dendrocopos medius, is a European woodpecker belonging to the genus Dendrocopos. The Middle Spotted
Woodpecker is about 8 inches long and has plumage similar to the Great Spotted Woodpecker. Similar to that species the upper body is predominantly black with white oval wing patches and white barring on the wings, and the undersides are white. The main differences are a red crown, lack of a black moustache-like stripe, a pink vent, and dark streaks on the sides.
The Middle Spotted Woodpecker occurs only in Europe and southwest Asia, from northern Spain and France east to Poland and Ukraine, and south to central Italy, the Balkan Peninsula, Turkey and the Caucasus. Due to its sedentary nature it has never been recorded in Great Britain. It prefers deciduous forest regions, especially areas with old oak, hornbeam and elm, and a patchwork of clearings, pasture and dense woodland.
It commonly likes to feed high in the trees, moving constantly and making a good view difficult. In the breeding season it excavates a nest hole about 2 inches wide in a decaying tree trunk or thick branch. It lays four to seven eggs and incubates for 11-14 days.
The Middle Spotted Woodpecker lives predominantly on insects as well as their larvae, which it finds by picking them from branches and twigs rather than hacking them from beneath the bark. It will also feed on tree sap.