Family Woodpeckers (Picidae)

Least Concern

Yellow-throated Woodpecker (Piculus flavigula)


French: Pic à gorge jaune German: Gelbkehlspecht Spanish: Carpintero gorjigualdo

Picus flavigula


, 1783,



E race erythropis, with distinctive plumage and different habitat preferences, possibly a separate species. Race magnus intergrades with nominate in NE Brazil. Birds from SW Colombia, previously thought to represent undescribed race of present species, subsequently reidentified as P. litae. Three subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • P. f. flavigula (Boddaert, 1783) – Yellow-throated Woodpecker – extreme E Colombia, S Venezuela and the Guianas, S to N Amazonia.
  • P. f. magnus (Cherrie & Reichenberger, 1921) – SE Colombia, NE Ecuador and Amazonian Brazil S to E Peru, NE Bolivia and Mato Grosso.
  • P. f. erythropis (Vieillot, 1818) – Red-throated Woodpecker – E Brazil in Pernambuco and from Bahia to São Paulo.
  • Descriptive notes

    19–20 cm; 44–63 g (flavi­gula). Male has bright red forehead to nape with dark feather bases, yellowish-green lores, short red malar band; rest of... read more


    Far-carrying hissing “queea” or “shaa, gheh” or “shreeyr”,... read more


    Tall, humid terra firme forest and seasonally inundated várzea forest along... read more

    Food and feeding

    Mainly ants (Camponotus, Pheidole, Crematogaster) recorded in diet. Met with singly, in well-separated pairs, or... read more


    Probably breeds in Nov in Colombia and Venezuela; May–Jul in the Guianas, and Aug–Dec in Brazil to Bolivia. Hole built in stub... read more



    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened. Rather common throughout most of range; rare to uncommon in Ecuador and Peru. Occurs in Canaima National Park and Imataca Forest Reserve and El... read more

    Recommended citation

    Winkler, H. & Christie, D.A. (2019). Yellow-throated Woodpecker (Piculus flavigula). 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 19 June 2019).