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Woodcreepers: Dendrocolaptidae

Behavior And Reproduction

Woodcreepers stay in their breeding area all year long. They do not migrate. Some species of woodcreepers live in male-female pairs all year long, while others are solitary except during the breeding season.

At night, woodcreepers generally roost in natural tree-cavities or old woodpecker holes, with each individual occupying a separate hole.

Woodcreepers sing primarily at dusk, often while they are feeding. Their songs are simple and clear, frequently made up of either soft trills or a series of loud, ringing tones.

Woodcreepers nest in holes in tree-trunks, sometimes those which were once used by woodpeckers. They build nests from small pieces of plant material. The female generally lays two or three white eggs. Eggs hatch in fifteen to twenty-one days. The young fledge, or grow the feathers needed to fly, in nineteen to twenty-three days. Older nestling and fledgling woodcreepers spend the nights in holes separate from the parents. Both parents participate in all phases of reproductive activity, including building the nest, incubating the eggs, and feeding the hatched young.


Woodcreepers are one of many groups of birds known as cavity nesters, birds that nest in tree cavities, or holes. Tree cavities occur naturally or are purposely excavated, dug out. Species that excavate their own nest cavities are known as primary cavity nesters, and include groups such as woodpeckers. Woodcreepers, on the other hand, are secondary cavity nesters, species that are unable to excavate their own cavities. Secondary cavity nesters use either naturally occurring cavities or cavities that have been excavated by other species.

Additional topics

Animal Life ResourceBirdsWoodcreepers: Dendrocolaptidae - Physical Characteristics, Diet, Behavior And Reproduction, Conservation Status, Red-billed Scythebill (campylorhamphus Trochilirostris): Species Account - GEOGRAPHIC RANGE, HABITAT, WOODCREEPERS AND PEOPLE