Definition of woodpecker
: any of numerous birds (family Picidae) with zygodactyl feet, stiff spiny tail feathers used in climbing or resting on tree trunks, a usually extensible tongue, a very hard bill used to drill the bark or wood of trees for insect food or to excavate nesting cavities, and generally showy parti-colored plumage
Recent Examples of woodpecker from the Web
A family of woodpeckers have made their home in a rotted tree.
Charley then goes on to vividly imagine a primordial tree trunk, surrounded by the corpses of proto-woodpeckers who had shattered their brain pans open, trying to smash open the trunk with their fragile skulls.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'woodpecker'. Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
First Known Use of woodpecker
WOODPECKER Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of woodpecker for English Language Learners
: a bird that has a very hard beak which it uses to make holes in trees to get insects for food
WOODPECKER Defined for Kids
Definition of woodpecker for Students
: a bird that climbs trees and drills holes in them with its bill in search of insects
Seen and Heard
What made you want to look up woodpecker? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).