Family Woodpeckers (Picidae)

Least Concern

Yellow-crested Woodpecker (Dendropicos xantholophus)


French: Pic à couronne d’or German: Scheitelfleckspecht Spanish: Pito coronado
Other common names: Golden-crowned Woodpecker

Dendropicus [sic] xantholophus


, 1883,



Often placed, along with D. namaquus and D. pyrrhogaster, in a separate genus Thripias#R, or, more recently, all three placed in Chloropicus (which has priority)#R. Monotypic.


SE Nigeria and SW Cameroon E to S South Sudan, W & C Uganda and extreme W Kenya, and S to NW Angola and SW & SC DRCongo; recorded in Tanzania#R.

Descriptive notes

c. 25 cm; 50–73 g. Male has brown forehead merging into blackish crown, crown feathers with few white speckles, broad yellow tips, black nape and hindneck; white lores... read more


Single “dit” and “dit-it” notes to fast bursts of purring “... read more


Mainly areas with large trees in lowland forest, forest edge, also in nearby thick secondary growth... read more

Food and feeding

Diet largely of wood-boring beetles and their larvae; also takes other insects (ants), and spiders. Mostly singly or in pairs. Forages in... read more


Probably Oct–Mar in Cameroon, and Jan–Apr and Sept elsewhere in W; Jun–Sept in Angola; Sept–Mar in Uganda and Kenya... read more



Status and conservation

Not globally threatened. Common forest woodpecker. Considered common in Angola; uncommon in Kenya. Rather poorly known, but appears to be under no threat. Present in several... read more

Recommended citation

Winkler, H. & Christie, D.A. (2020). Yellow-crested Woodpecker (Dendropicos xantholophus). 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 29 January 2020).