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Attract the Downy Woodpecker to Your Garden

Background

Birds rely on a variety of food sources that can change at different times of their life cycle. Some birds that eat seeds as adults require insects to feed their young. Planting is the best way to ensure you meet the needs of the greatest diversity of birds throughout the seasons.

Downy Woodpecker

A good snag (standing dead tree) or large mature trees are the best way to attract downy woodpeckers, which will hunt for insects up and down their trunks. However, these birds will also partake of some fruit, nuts and seeds. Try planting beech, mountain ash, hazelnut, oak, dogwood, or Virginia creeper. Downy woodpeckers are unlikely to use nest boxes, preferring instead to excavate cavities in snags and line them with wood chips.

For more ideas on attracting birds or choosing plants, see the following Web site: www.wildaboutgardening.org