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Tonbridge (Charcott) - Lesser Spotted Woodpecker (1 Viewer)


New member
Hi there - I was cycling past Blackhoath Wood from Charcott when a small s woodpecker flew across to a tree on the side of the lane, I stopped and walked back, it was still there for a couple of seconds before flying away. It was a spotted woodpecker, significantly smaller than a greater spotted, which I am used to seeing in the garden. No photos or notes, other than it had red at the head, I can't be sure now if it was the cap, No other red. At the time I was convinced it must be a lesser spotted, but am doubting myself now as these are rare for casual observes such as me to see.

If anyone knows the area, do you know if they have been seen in these particular woods before?


Alexander Stöhr

Well-known member
Hello Simon,

welcome to birdforum! Although its difficult to be sure, Lesser Spotted often shows a different behaviour to Greater and Lesser Spotted WP:

it is more agile, moves faster and regular searches twigs. So you get the feeling that Lesser is busy in covering the whole tree in search for insects and much faster than the greater relatives. When a tree is finished (hope thats understandable) the bird moves to the next one, so a Lesser stays a shorter time on a tree than the relatives.

So, Lesser Spotted often shows a behaviour more similar to a Tit than to a Greater or Middle Spotted Woodpecker.

I assume that you are aware of juvenile Greater Spotted with a red cap.

I hope that helps next time you see one!


New member
Thanks Alexander, the reason I discounted a juvenile GS was that no other woodpeckers were around, but on balance that is probably more likely, unfortunately!

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