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Tits

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Blue Tits

   
     

Tits are small birds with plain or colourful plumages, stout legs and strong feet and short, triangular bills. Several species have crests.

In the UK, six species breed (plus one unrelated species in reedbeds); there are a few more in Europe and Asia, plus others in Africa and the Americas. They are social, often in mixed flocks, but territorial when nesting. They are among the most persistent and successful visitors to garden feeders.

Blue tits
A colourful mix of blue, yellow, white and green makes the blue tit one of our most attractive and most recognisable garden visitors. In winter, family flocks join up with other tits as they search for food. A garden with four or five blue tits at a feeder at any one time may be feeding 20 or more.

Coal tit
Not as colourful as some of its relatives, the coal tit has a distinctive grey back, black cap, and white patch at the back of its neck. Its smaller, more slender bill than blue or great tits means it can feed more successfully in conifers. A regular visitor to most feeders, they will take and store food for eating later.

In winter they join with other tits to form flocks which roam through woodlands and gardens in search of food.

Great tits
The largest UK tit - green and yellow with a striking glossy black head with white cheeks and a distinctive two-syllable song. It is a woodland bird which has readily adapted to man-made habitats to become a familiar garden visitor.

It can be quite aggressive at a birdtable, fighting off smaller tits. In winter it joins with blue tits and others to form roaming flocks which scour gardens and countryside for food.

In the time we have been walking around the pond we have only seen blue tits and long tail tits!

 

Crested tits
Although not as colourful as some other tits, the crested tit's 'bridled' face pattern and the upstanding black and white crest make this a most distinctive species.

Crested tits feed actively, clinging to trunks and hanging from branches, like most tits, searching for a wide range of invertebrates and pine seeds. They store food extensively during early winter, using it in late winter.

Willow tits
Willow tits are between blue and great tits in size, with no yellow, green or blue. They have a large sooty-black cap extending to the back of the neck and a small untidy black bib. It is mid-brown above, with whiter cheeks and pale buff-grey underparts. Its wings show a pale panel not found in marsh tits.

Marsh tit
The marsh tit is a small, mainly brown bird, with a shiny black cap, dark 'bib' and pale belly. In the UK its identification is made tricky by the very similar appearance of our race of willow tit. They're so hard to identify that ornithologists didn't realise there were two species until 1897!

     
 
     
 
     
   
     
 
     
 

Long Tail Tits

   
 
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