Family Tanagers (Thraupidae)


Woodpecker Finch (Geospiza pallida)


French: Géospize pique-bois German: Spechtdarwinfink Spanish: Pinzón de Darwin carpintero

Cactornis pallida

P. L. Sclater and Salvin

, 1870,

Santa Cruz (formerly Indefatigable Island), Galapagos Islands


See G. psittacula. Three subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • G. p. producta (Ridgway, 1894) – Fernandina and Isabela, in W Galapagos Is.
  • G. p. pallida (P. L. Sclater & Salvin, 1870) – Santiago, Rábida, Pinzón, Baltra, Santa Cruz, Floreana and probably Santa Fe#R, in C & S Galapagos Is.
  • G. p. striatipecta (Swarth, 1931) – San Cristóbal, in SE Galapagos Is.
  • Descriptive notes

    15 cm; 20–31 g. A medium-sized to larger Darwin’s finch with long bill, approximately twice as long as base depth, with arched culmen and nearly straight gonys,... read more


    Song loud and carries well, e.g. “chup-tupupupu chup-tupupupu” or “cht-trrr cht-... read more


    Found in variety of habitats and elevations, especially montane evergreen forest; typically most... read more

    Food and feeding

    Main foods various types of arthropod, including wood-boring beetle (Coleoptera) larvae. Highly distinctive foraging behaviour, including... read more


    Nest built by male, a sphere with entrance towards top and on side, made from dry grasses and other vegetation (often moss and lichen used... read more



    Status and conservation

    VULNERABLE. Locally common, and widespread. Despite its modest appearance, this is one of the most renowned of all bird species, famed primarily for its well-publicized habit... read more

    Recommended citation

    Jaramillo, A., Christie, D.A. & Sharpe, C.J. (2019). Woodpecker Finch (Geospiza pallida). 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 13 December 2019).