Picus viridis 

Scope: Global
Language: English

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Aves Piciformes Picidae

Scientific Name: Picus viridis Linnaeus, 1758
Regional Assessments:
Common Name(s):
English Eurasian Green Woodpecker, European Green Woodpecker, Green Woodpecker
Taxonomic Source(s): del Hoyo, J., Collar, N.J., Christie, D.A., Elliott, A. and Fishpool, L.D.C. 2014. HBW and BirdLife International Illustrated Checklist of the Birds of the World. Volume 1: Non-passerines. Lynx Edicions BirdLife International, Barcelona, Spain and Cambridge, UK.

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2016
Date Assessed: 2016-10-01
Assessor(s): BirdLife International
Reviewer(s): Butchart, S. & Symes, A.
Facilitator/Compiler(s): Symes, A., Ashpole, J
This species has an extremely large range, and hence does not approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the range size criterion (Extent of Occurrence <20,000 km2 combined with a declining or fluctuating range size, habitat extent/quality, or population size and a small number of locations or severe fragmentation). The population trend appears to be increasing, and hence the species does not approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population trend criterion (>30% decline over ten years or three generations). The population size is extremely large, and hence does not approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population size criterion (<10,000 mature individuals with a continuing decline estimated to be >10% in ten years or three generations, or with a specified population structure). For these reasons the species is evaluated as Least Concern.
Previously published Red List assessments:

Geographic Range [top]

Countries occurrence:
Albania; Armenia; Austria; Azerbaijan; Belarus; Belgium; Bosnia and Herzegovina; Bulgaria; Croatia; Czech Republic; Denmark; Estonia; France; Georgia; Germany; Greece; Hungary; Iran, Islamic Republic of; Iraq; Italy; Latvia; Liechtenstein; Lithuania; Luxembourg; Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of; Moldova; Montenegro; Netherlands; Norway; Poland; Romania; Russian Federation (European Russia); Serbia; Slovakia; Slovenia; Spain; Sweden; Switzerland; Turkey; Ukraine; United Kingdom
Finland; Gibraltar; Ireland; Malta
Additional data:
Continuing decline in area of occupancy (AOO):Unknown
Extreme fluctuations in area of occupancy (AOO):NoEstimated extent of occurrence (EOO) - km2:11800000
Continuing decline in extent of occurrence (EOO):UnknownExtreme fluctuations in extent of occurrence (EOO):No
Continuing decline in number of locations:Unknown
Extreme fluctuations in the number of locations:No
Upper elevation limit (metres):3000
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population:The European population is estimated at 587,000-1,050,000 pairs, which equates to 1,180,000-2,120,000 mature individuals (BirdLife International 2015). Europe forms c.95% of the global range, so a very preliminary estimate of the global population size is 1,240,000-2,230,000 mature individuals although further validation of this estimate is needed.

Trend Justification:  The European population trend increased moderately between 1980 and 2013 (EBCC 2015).
Current Population Trend:Increasing
Additional data:
Number of mature individuals:1200000-2299999Continuing decline of mature individuals:Unknown
Extreme fluctuations:NoPopulation severely fragmented:No
Continuing decline in subpopulations:Unknown
Extreme fluctuations in subpopulations:NoAll individuals in one subpopulation:No

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:This species uses a great variety of semi-open habitats. It is confined to larger open sections or clearings in extensively wooded areas, forest edges, copses, parks, orchards and residential areas, usually near mature deciduous trees, but often associated with conifers in mountains and in the north. Laying occurs from early April to June and clutches are usually five to eight eggs. The nest is excavated in dead or soft, living wood in unbroken trees. It feeds predominantly on ants with larger ant species generally preferred. Other insects are also taken, as are earthworms and snails and occasionally reptiles, fruits, berries and seeds. The species is resident, although some local winter movements occur (Winkler and Christie 2015).
Continuing decline in area, extent and/or quality of habitat:Unknown
Generation Length (years):5.6
Movement patterns:Not a Migrant

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): The main threats to this species are the intensification of agriculture and forestry, and the conversion of pasture to arable land, which considerably reduces ant populations (Winkler and Christie 2015). Intensive forestry has also resulted in the loss of nest-sites (Tucker and Heath 1994). Harsh winter weather can also cause major mortality, effects of which may last for years (Hagemeijer and Blair 1997, Winkler and Christie 2015) and can be exacerbated by the impacts from other threats (Tucker and Heath 1994).

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: Conservation Actions Underway
Bern Convention Appendix II. There are no known current conservation measures for this species.

Conservation Actions Proposed
Wide-scale habitat conservation needs to be undertaken to maintain nesting and feeding habitats close to each other within structurally diverse landscapes. Actions should include the conservation of old trees for nesting in woodlands, orchards and villages and the maintenance and restoration of feeding grounds such as small meadows, pastures, orchards and heaths (Tucker and Heath 1994).

Citation: BirdLife International. 2016. Picus viridis. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2016: e.T22725022A87292744. . Downloaded on 24 May 2018.
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