Leuconotopicus is a genus of woodpeckers in the family Picidae native to North and South America.

White-headed woodpecker.jpg
White-headed woodpecker (Leuconotopicus albolarvatus)
Scientific classification e
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Aves
Order: Piciformes
Family: Picidae
Tribe: Melanerpini
Genus: Leuconotopicus
Malherbe, 1845

See text


The genus was erected by the French ornithologist Alfred Malherbe in 1845 with Strickland's woodpecker (Leuconotopicus stricklandi) as the type species.[1] The name Leuconotopicus combines the Ancient Greek leukos meaning "white", nōton meaning "back" and pikos meaning "woodpecker".[2] The genus is sister to the genus Veniliornis and is one of eight genera placed in the tribe Melanerpini within the woodpecker subfamily Picinae.[3] The species now placed in this genus were previously assigned to Picoides.[4][5]

The genus contains the following six species:[5]

Image Scientific name Common Name Distribution
  Leuconotopicus borealis Red-cockaded woodpecker southeastern United States from Florida to New Jersey and Maryland, as far west as eastern Texas and Oklahoma, and inland to Missouri, Kentucky, and Tennessee
  Leuconotopicus fumigatus Smoky-brown woodpecker Argentina, Belize, Bolivia, Colombia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama, Peru, and Venezuela
  Leuconotopicus arizonae Arizona woodpecker southern Arizona and New Mexico and the Sierra Madre Occidental of western Mexico
Leuconotopicus stricklandi Strickland's woodpecker Mexico
  Leuconotopicus villosus Hairy woodpecker Bahamas, Canada, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama, Puerto Rico, Saint Pierre and Miquelon, Turks and Caicos Islands, and the United States
  Leuconotopicus albolarvatus White-headed woodpecker British Columbia through southern California


  1. ^ Malherbe, Alfred (1845). "Description de trois espèces nouvelles du genre Picus, Linné". Revue Zoologique par la Société Cuvierienne (in French and Latin). 8: 373.
  2. ^ Jobling, James A. (2010). The Helm Dictionary of Scientific Bird Names. London: Christopher Helm. p. 103. ISBN 978-1-4081-2501-4.
  3. ^ Shakya, S.B.; Fuchs, J.; Pons, J.-M.; Sheldon, F.H. (2017). "Tapping the woodpecker tree for evolutionary insight". Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution. 116: 182–191. doi:10.1016/j.ympev.2017.09.005. PMID 28890006.
  4. ^ Fuchs, J.; Pons, J.M. (2015). "A new classification of the pied woodpeckers assemblage (Dendropicini, Picidae) based on a comprehensive multi-locus phylogeny". Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution. 88: 28–37. doi:10.1016/j.ympev.2015.03.016. PMID 25818851.
  5. ^ a b Gill, Frank; Donsker, David (eds.). "Woodpeckers". World Bird List Version 6.2. International Ornithologists' Union. Retrieved 5 May 2016.