Dryobates is a genus of birds in the woodpecker family Picidae. The species are widely distributed and occur in both Eurasia and the Americas.

Picoides nuttallii -Olive View, Sylmar, California, USA -male-8.jpg
Male Nuttall's woodpecker in California, USA
Scientific classification e
Domain: Eukaryota
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Aves
Order: Piciformes
Family: Picidae
Tribe: Melanerpini
Genus: Dryobates
F. Boie, 1826

Six, see text


The genus Dryobates was named by the German naturalist Friedrich Boie in 1826 with the downy woodpecker (Dryobates pubescens) as the type species.[1]

The genus name Dryobates is from the Greek compound word δρυο-βάτης : 'woodland walker'; from δρῦς : drus (genitive δρυός : dryós) meaning woodland and -βάτης : -bátēs meaning walker.[2] In the eBird/Clements Checklist of Birds of the World, the genus Dryobates is expanded to include all the species in Leuconotopicus and Veniliornis.[3]

The genus contains the following species:[4]

Image Scientific name Common Name Distribution
  Dryobates nuttalli Nuttall's woodpecker northern California extending south towards the northwest region of Baja California, Mexico
  Dryobates pubescens Downy woodpecker North America
  Dryobates scalaris Ladder-backed woodpecker southwestern United States (north to extreme southern Nevada and extreme southeastern Colorado), most of Mexico, and locally in Central America as far south as Nicaragua
  Dryobates minor Lesser spotted woodpecker Europe
  Dryobates cathpharius Crimson-breasted woodpecker Bangladesh, Bhutan, China, India, Laos, Myanmar, Nepal, Thailand, and Vietnam


  1. ^ Boie, Friedrich (1826). "Generalübersicht". Isis von Oken (in German). Jena. 18-19. Col 977.
  2. ^ Jobling, James A. (2010). The Helm Dictionary of Scientific Bird Names. London: Christopher Helm. p. 140. ISBN 978-1-4081-2501-4.
  3. ^ Clements, J.F.; Schulenberg, T.S.; Iliff, M.J.; Billerman, S.M.; Fredericks, T.A.; Sullivan, B.L.; Wood, C.L. (2019). "The eBird/Clements Checklist of Birds of the World: v2019". Retrieved 18 May 2020.
  4. ^ Gill, Frank; Donsker, David (eds.). "Woodpeckers". World Bird List Version 6.2. International Ornithologists' Union. Retrieved 5 May 2016.