Willow Tit

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Image:Willowtit.JPG

Common Name: Willow Tit
Scientific Name: Parus montanus

Size: 4.5 inches (11.5 cm)

Habitat: Eurasia; widespread and common resident breeder throughout temperate and subarctic Europe and northern Asia. It is a conifer specialist, which explains it breeding much further north. It is resident, and most birds do not migrate.


Status: Least Concern. Global Population: 150,000,000 - 500,000,000 Mature individuals. Both increases and decreases in regional populations have been noted in the second half of the 20th century, but in Europe, trends since 1980 show that populations have undergone a moderate decline.

Diet: Insects, caterpillars, and seeds.

Breeding: The Willow Tit often excavates its own nesting hole, even piercing hard bark; this is usually in a rotten stump or in a tree, more or less decayed. Most nests examined are cups of felted material, such as fur, hair and wood chips, but feathers are sometimes used. The number of eggs varies from six to nine, with reddish spots or blotches.

Cool Facts: The Willow Tit is distinguished from the Marsh Tit by a sooty brown instead of a glossy blue black cap; the general color is otherwise similar, though the under parts are more buff and the flanks distinctly more rufous; the pale buff edgings to the secondaries form a light patch on the closed wing. The feathers of the crown and the black bib under the bill are longer, but this is not an easily noticed character. However, the more graduated tail (not square) shows distinctly when spread.

The most common call is a nasal ‘zee, zee, zee’, but the notes of the bird evidently vary considerably. Occasionally a double note, ‘ipsee, ipsee’, is repeated four or five times.


Found in Songbird ReMix European Edition 2

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