Aves, p�le ornithologique de Natagora

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Aves, 54/4 | 2017 | 161-178

  The Grey-headed Woodpecker Picus canus, a nesting species that is disappearing from Belgium. Analysis of population trends for the period 2008-2017
Alain De Broyer

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Article summary

In Belgium the Grey-headed Woodpecker Picus canus has always been thought to be a rare and localized nesting species that is found only in Wallonia. The present article presents an analysis of recent changes in the populations of this species that have occurred since the surveys conducted between 2001 and 2007 for the Atlas of Nesting Birds of Wallonia. Analysis of the available data shows that over the period 2008-2017 there has been a marked decrease in numbers and a contraction of the area occupied. These results are placed in the wider European context with a particular emphasis on trends in neighbouring areas. Various hypotheses are advanced to explain the decrease observed in Wallonia; in particular the role played by the climate; the competition with the Green Woodpecker Picus viridis; the limited availability of suitable habitats and also disturbance by mankind.


  • Alain De Broyer
    Département Études
    (Inventaires ornithologiques)
    Rue du Coirbois 75
    5580 Rochefort