Family Woodpeckers (Picidae)

Least Concern

Sulawesi Pygmy Woodpecker (Picoides temminckii)


French: Pic de Temminck German: Temminckspecht Spanish: Pico de Célebes
Other common names: Sulawesi Woodpecker

Picus Temminckii


, 1849,



This species, along with P. kizuki, P. maculatus, P. ramsayi, P. canicapillus, P. nanus and P. moluccensis, was previously placed in Dendrocopos, but molecular studies indicate that they all form a separate clade of very small species, evidently sister to the P. tridactylus clade#R#R; all seven have been combined in Yungipicus by some authors. Populations in S and uplands tend to be somewhat larger than those in N and lowlands, but no grounds for racial subdivision. Monotypic.


Sulawesi, including Togian Is and Butung.

Descriptive notes

13–14 cm. Male has buff-brown lower forehead, dark brown upper forehead and crown with grey feather bases, in worn plumage appearing streaked; narrow red napeband (red... read more


Sharp “tirr-tirr”; also rapid, thin “geegeegeegeegeegeegee”. Drums.


Wooded areas, including secondary forest, riparian woodland, orange and coffee plantations in... read more

Food and feeding

Details of diet not known; thought to be similar to that of P. maculatus. Spends most of its time high up in treetops.


Drumming and copulations recorded in Aug; probably breeds also early in year. Nest-hole in dead tree, preferentially rainforest tree (... read more


Resident and sedentary.

Status and conservation

Not globally threatened. Not uncommon within its range. Occurs in Lore Lindu, Dumoga-Bone and Rawa Aopa National Parks, and Manembonembo and Tangkoko Nature Reserves; common... read more

Recommended citation

Winkler, H., Christie, D.A. & Kirwan, G.M. (2020). Sulawesi Pygmy Woodpecker (Picoides temminckii). In: del Hoyo, J., Elliott, A., Sargatal, J., Christie, D.A. & de Juana, E. (eds.). Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona. (retrieved from on 23 January 2020).