Bird Facts:

Length: 11.5 cm.
The male and female have like plumage.
Voice: The characteristic ‘tzee tzee tzee’, often only ‘choo-r-r’.
Size of Egg: 14.3—17.8 x 11.8—13.3 mm.

The lovely crested tit is plentiful throughout Europe but absents from England, Ireland, Italy and the far North. It makes its home in tall evergreen forests from lowland to mountain elevations, though in western Europe, interestingly enough, it is occurring with increasing frequency also in deciduous woods, where it finds more cavities suitable for nesting.

During the courting season in spring the male spreads and closes his head- crest and executes various bows while he sings his ‘Serenade’. He often has trouble finding a suitable cavity in which to build his nest and sometimes has to be satisfied with an abandoned squirrel’s drey, an old overturned tree stump or a man-made nest box. On occasion, though rarely, he excavates his own hole in the rotten wood.

The female lays the first clutch of 7 to 10 eggs in April, incubating them herself for 15 to 18 days. The young, which leave the nest after 20 to 22 days, are fed by both parents. When they have fledged the parent birds generally have a second brood in June, often using the same nest. In the autumn months, the crested tits join groups of other tits, often acting as leaders of the flock when it roams the countryside in winter.

Their diet consists mainly of small insects, especially aphids, bark beetles and weevils and, in winter, various seeds. The crested tit is adroit at squeezing between the thick branches of conifers in search of food and if it does not find enough there it often sucks fallen seeds on the ground.

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Fieldfare – (Turdus Pilaris)

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