Thursday, October 27, 2011

Tufted Titmouse

Much of the thrill of birding is being at the right place at the right time. From Day One at our Dundas banding station, I predicted we would encounter a Tufted Titmouse. The habitat seemed perfect--wood edge with plenty of oaks and nearby bird feeders. Wednesday morning (three years later) my prediction materialized. I knew a bird hit the net, but what a thrill to discover our first Tufted Titmouse! (The word titmouse is "derived from the Old Icelandic titr, meaning 'something small,' and mouse, a corruption of the Old English mase, 'small bird'" (Gruson's Words for Birds)).

Tufted Titmice are very common in the eastern deciduous forests of the United States. Minnesota is at the northwest corner of the species' range (see eBird). During the past 50 years, perhaps as a result of global warming, titmice have been expanding northward. This titmouse was an after-hatching year bird. During their first year, young birds often stay in their parents' territories and help raise second broods. Only in their second year do they disperse into new territories (Grubb and Pravasudov 1994).

6 comments:

  1. Just wanted to share that we spotted a banded Tufted Titmouse at our feeder today. I've seen them for the first time this year. I tried to get a picture but missed. Cute little guy!

    ReplyDelete
  2. I should add we are in Eagan, MN.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I banded a titmouse in October 2011 near Northfield, but I would be surprised if this bird is the same one you are seeing.

      Delete
  3. Hi,

    I saw a banded tufted titmouse at my feeder in Pequannock, NJ, 07440. Any idea howbto figure out who banded it?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Call the Banding Office at 1/800-327-BAND. You will need the band number. If you don’t have the number, you could try photographing the bird to try to get the number. Otherwise, give your local wildlife management folks a call and see if there is anyone banding in your area. This might give you the answer, especially with a relatively sedentary bird like the titmouse. Hope this helps.

      Delete
    2. I'll do that. Thanks for your help.

      Delete