Bill size is another. Hairy woodpeckers stand about 9.25 inches long and are similar in size to a robin, while downy woodpeckers only measure about 6.5 inches long, similar in size to a house sparrow. The Hairy Woodpecker is larger, louder, longer-billed, and has a less-marked tail than the Downy Woodpecker. Make the ID: Downy vs Hairy Woodpecker. He argues that Downy Woodpeckers benefit by looking like the larger and more aggressive Hairy Woodpecker because it reduces the chance of an attack by a Hairy Woodpecker. A few years ago I was alerted to a subtle difference in the head patterns of Downy and Hairy Woodpeckers when I read a short note by Mark Szantyr with a nod to Julian Hough in the journal The Connecticut Warbler.He pointed out that Downy Woodpecker has a … The smallest woodpecker in North America, common and widespread, although it avoids the arid southwest. Posted on October 29, 2020. The easiest way to tell the difference between the Downy Woodpecker and Hairy Woodpecker is their size. They measure between 9-10 inches in length and weigh around 1.4-3.4 ounce with a … The first photo in this post is not to scale, but it gives a great impression of the size difference between these two species. The Hairy Woodpecker is about 30% larger than the Downy Woodpecker (depending on several variables). The active little Downy Woodpecker is a familiar sight at backyard feeders and in parks and woodlots, where it joins flocks of chickadees and nuthatches, barely outsizing them. Hairy Woodpecker They are just about the size of a robin, but larger and more slender than the Downy. It is virtually identical in plumage to the smaller downy woodpecker. Downy Woodpeckers have shorter bills in relation to their body size where a Hairy Woodpecker… In the east this is the most familiar member of the family, readily entering towns and city parks, coming to backyard bird feeders. Hairy Woodpeckers are several inches larger than Downys. An often acrobatic forager, this black-and-white woodpecker is at home on tiny branches or balancing on slender plant galls, sycamore seed balls, and suet feeders. Based on our understanding of avian vision, the size difference between the two species is difficult for a bird to perceive at a distance of more than a few meters. Beak Size: The most pronounced field mark is beak size. The hairy woodpecker measures from 18–26 cm (7.1–10.2 in) in length, 33–43 cm (13–17 in) in wingspan and 40–95 g (1.4–3.4 oz) in weight. Both look natty in their checkered plumage, but how to tell them apart? Two woodpeckers who look very much alike are busy inspecting tree bark around North America looking for food. Its small size makes it versatile, and it may forage on weed stalks as well as in large trees.