March bird of the month – Blue Tit
Scientific name: Cyanistes caeruleus
As we enter April we turn our attentions to the Blue Tit, a common visitor to gardens across the UK this time of year.
Blue Tits live to approximately 3 years.
- Feather colour – AS the name suggests the Blue Tit is famed for its blue feathers which are often brighter in males than females. The chest is a bright yellow, the face is white with black markings and there is usually green plumage down the back of the Blue Tit.
- Leg colour – they have a grey leg colouring.
- Beak – their beaks are black, short and thin.
- UV Light- Blue Tits can see in ultra violet and under UV light their blue crowns glow brightly. This is likely to help signify the healthier mate by the brightness of their UV glow.
Blue Tits on average can grow to an approximate length of 12cm, with a wingspan of 18cm and weigh 11g.
The Blue Tit has a trilling song which sounds like “tsee-tsee-tsee”.
Breeding season usually begins around the third week in April but this is dependent on location and seasonal changes.
Clutch sizes can vary from 7 – 13 eggs but in some cases it has been known for them to lay up to 19 eggs.
Usually a Blue Tit will lay repeat clutches but if their first is lost they will rarely try to rear a second brood.
Blue Tits are comfortable in the lowland deciduous woodland, parks and gardens, rarely moving far from where they’ve hatched
Typically found in holes in trees but are happy to use nest boxes with small entrance holes (c.25cm diameter). This allows some security from larger more dominant birds like Great Tits or House Sparrows.
The Blue Tit is in the “green” category for conservation status in the UK as it sees 15 million birds of the 20-44 million pairs that can be found in Europe.
What they eat:
Blue Tits will primarily feed on insects, mealworms, waxworms and caterpillars but will also eat mixed bird seed, peanuts and suet pellets.
Please remember, that one of the commonest problems with local wildlife health issues in the UK is due to neglected and dirty feeders. We would like to ask that anyone wishing to assist in the feeding of wild birds makes sure to check and clean feeders regularly to help keep them safe and healthy.
Looking for further advice?
Then why not pop into your local Scotsdales store today and speak with a member of our knowledgeable team. We will be happy to assist in any way we can with advice and guidance regarding the best options for birds in your garden.