Nature Notes

The Diminutive Blue-Tit

The Blue-Tit, often called the Tom-Tit, is a very active little bird. It is only a little over 4" long but has a very engaging character, and whenever I see a group of them in my garden I can happily spend many minutes watching them as they are always hunting for spiders and other insects, sometimes upside down, in nooks and crannies.

There are eight different types of this family, called Titmice, that include Long-Tailed, Coal, and Bearded-Tit versions. The biggest of the lot is the Beaded Tit, or Reedling, and it is a wopping 6" long. Blue-Tits can produce up to 8 eggs in April/May, and they are white with red spots in a nest that is made of moss, wool and feathers, located in a hole in a tree or wall or, like the Robin, in an old saucepan.