About animals

Tit birds

Pin
Send
Share
Send


Yew tit
Parus varius
Order Passeriformes - Passeriformes
Family Titmouse - Raridae

STATUS. Rare species (III category)

Habitat
A few, sporadically widespread species with a limited (peripheral) range. Wing length 74-78 mm. Forest zone.

Spread. In Russia, it nests only on the South Kuril Islands (Kunashir, Shikotan and Iturup). Birds inhabit coniferous-deciduous and coniferous forests along mountain slopes and river valleys with a dense canopy of Kuril bamboo.
Prefer areas of forest with pointed yew (1, 2). Distributed in northeast China, in the central and southern regions of the Korean Peninsula, on about. Taiwan and the Japanese islands from Hokkaido in the north to Ryukyu in the south, as well as on some other islands near Japan (3, 4).

Number. On about. Kunashir in 1962 - 1963 3 - 4 pairs of birds were recorded per 1 km of the route (2). Total abundance unknown.

Limiting factors. Not found out.

Security measures. It is necessary to preserve the habitat. The southern forms of this species that inhabit the southern Japanese islands are listed in the Red Book of Birds of Japan.

Sources of information: 1. Gizenko, 1955, 2. Nechaev, 1969, 3. Check-list of Japanese Birds, 1974, 4. Stepanyan, 1978. Compiled by V. A. Nechaev.

Tit

Latin name:Parus
English name:Tomtit
Kingdom:Animals
A type:Chordate
Class:Birds
Detachment:Passerines
Family:Tit
Kind:Tits
Body length:15-20 cm
Wing length:6-8 cm
Wingspan:26 cm
Weight:14-20 g

Bird description

You can easily recognize a small and lively songbird - titmouse - by its bright lemon-yellow abdomen with a longitudinal black stripe, black plumage of the head with white cheeks and a bluish-gray back and wings. These birds have a small neat beak, flattened on the sides and very tenacious claws on the legs.

As for the sizes, on the average, the tits are slightly larger than the sparrows, and differ from them by their longer tail. The length of their body reaches 15-20 cm, the mass is from 14 to 20 g, the wingspan is up to 26 cm.

These songbirds belong to the order Passeriformes, the titmouse family and the genus titmouse. At different times, scientists attributed to the titmouse of various birds, for example, azores. However, now 4 main species belong to this genus (great tit, gray, eastern, green-backed) and their subspecies.

What eats

Tits are unpretentious in nutrition, which is a plus for their maintenance at home. But their diet is seasonal.

In summer, during nesting and breeding, tits feed mainly on animal feed: small insects, their larvae (beetles, flies, midges, mosquitoes, bugs, spiders, aphids). At the same time, birds eat a lot of forest pests, picking them out from under the bark of trees, for which they are often called the orderlies of the forest. Parents feed their chicks with caterpillars of butterflies.

But in the autumn-winter period, titmouse eagerly eat cereal plant foods and various plant seeds (spruce, pine, birch, linden, mountain ash, elderberry). That is why in the cities tits are becoming frequent visitors to feeders. By the way, in cold winters, birds need complementary foods, since most of the population dies of hunger.

Where dwells

The most common species - the great tit - can be found everywhere throughout Eurasia and even in northwestern Africa. Other species live in smaller areas - in individual countries of Asia.

Tits love to settle on the edges of deciduous forests or near glades and other open places. In addition, the birds are not at all afraid of people and willingly live in gardens and city parks.

Tit description

The word "tit" was formed from the name "blue color", therefore, it is directly related to the color of the bird, Blue Tit (Cyanistes caeruleus), which previously belonged to the genus of tits. Many species that previously belonged to the real tits are now transferred to the category of other genera: Sittiparus, Machlolophus, Periarus, Melaniparus, Pseudopodoces, gaits (Poecile) and blue cocks (Cyanistes).

Appearance

The Titmouse family includes subspecies: long-tailed and thick-billed tits. In the world today there are more than a hundred well-known and fairly well-studied species of birds belonging to this genus, but still only birds that are included in the titmouse family are considered to be true titmouses. Representatives of the species Gray Tit are characterized by a wide black stripe along the abdomen, as well as the absence of a crest. The main species difference is the gray color of the back, black cap, white spots on the cheeks and light chest. The belly is white with a central black band.

It is interesting! The tail is ash-colored and the tail feathers on the tail are blackish. The undertail is also black in the central part and a characteristic white color on the sides.

The great tit is a motile, rather swivel bird, with a body length of 13-17 cm, with an average weight of 14-21 g and a wingspan of no more than 22-26 cm. The species differs in neck and head in black, and also has rushing in eyes white cheeks, olive-colored top and yellowish lower part. The numerous subspecies of this species differ in some very noticeable variations in the color of plumage.

Character and lifestyle

It is incredibly difficult for a titmouse to be lurking or staying in the same place for a long time. Such a bird is accustomed to constant movement, but it is absolutely unpretentious in terms of habitat a feathered creature. Among other things, tits have no rivals in agility, mobility and curiosity, and thanks to tenacious and very strong legs such a small bird in size is able to perform many tricks, including all kinds of flip-flops.

Thanks to well-developed paws, tits survive even in adverse conditions, being at a great distance from their nest. Attaching claws to the surface of the branch, the bird quickly falls asleep, becoming similar in appearance to a small and very fluffy lump. It is this feature that saves her during too strong winter colds. The lifestyle of all bluebirds is mainly sedentary, but some species, according to experts, tend to wander periodically.

Nevertheless, each species of tits has only their inherent, most characteristic features, and the qualities uniting all representatives of the genus are beautiful and memorable plumage, incredibly mischievous behavior and simply loud singing, breathtaking in its harmony.

The process of molting in birds of this species under natural conditions occurs only once every twelve months.

It is interesting! Gray tit, as a rule, is observed in pairs, but sometimes such birds combine in small intraspecific groups or with other species of birds. The so-called mixed flocks are more productive in finding food in the hungry season.

By nature, absolutely all types of tits belong to the category of the most real orderlies of nature. Adult individuals actively destroy a huge number of many harmful insects, thus saving the greenery from death. For example, for one family of tits to feed its offspring, it is required to clear more than four dozen trees from pests. To communicate with each other, bird titmouse uses a special "squeaky" tweet, vaguely reminiscent of the loud and melodic sounds of "blue-blue-blue."

How many tits live

The life of a titmouse in natural conditions is very short-lived and, as a rule, is only three years. When kept in captivity, Great Tit is able to survive even up to fifteen years. Nevertheless, the total life expectancy of such an unusual feathered pet depends on so many factors, including compliance with the maintenance regimen and feeding rules.

Sexual dimorphism

Gray tit females have a narrower and dimmer strip on the abdomen. The females of the great tit are very similar in appearance to males, but in general, they have a slightly duller coloration of the plumage, so the black tones in the head and chest area are distinguished by a dark gray hue, and the collar and black strip on the belly are slightly thinner and may break .

Types of Tits

In accordance with the data provided by the International Union of Ornithologists, the Parus genus includes four species:

  • Gray tit (Parus cinereus) - a species that includes several subspecies that some time ago belonged to the species Great Tit (Parus major),
  • Bolshak, or Big tit (Parus major) - the largest and most numerous species,
  • East, or Japanese tit (Parus minor) Is a species represented by several subspecies at once, which do not differ in mixing or frequent hybridization,
  • Green-backed tit (Parus monticolus).

Until recently, the Eastern or Japanese tit species was classified as a subspecies of the great tit, but thanks to the efforts of Russian researchers it was possible to establish that these two species simply coexist quite successfully.

Habitat, habitat

The gray tit is represented by thirteen subspecies:

  • R.c. Ambiguus - an inhabitant of the peninsula of Malacca and the island of Sumatra,
  • P.c. caschmirensis with a gray spot on the back of the head - a resident of northeast Afghanistan, northern Pakistan and northwest India,
  • P.c. сinereus Vieillot is a nominative subspecies living on the island of Java and on the Sunda Minor Islands,
  • P.c. desоlorans Koelz - inhabitant of northeast Afghanistan and northwest Pakistan,
  • P.c. hainanus E.J.O. Nartert is an inhabitant of Hainan Island,
  • P.c. intermedius Zarudny is a resident of the north-east of Iran and the north-west of Turkmenistan,
  • P.c. mahrättarum E.J.O. Nartert is a resident of the north-west of India and the island of Sri Lanka,
  • P.c. panorum E.J.O. Nartert is an inhabitant of the north of India, Nepal, Bhutan, Bangladesh, the central part and the west of Myanmar,
  • P.c. sаrаwacensis Slater - inhabitant of the island of Kalimantan,
  • P.c. sturay Kölz - an inhabitant of the west, central part and north-east of India,
  • P.c. temrlrum Meyer de Skhauensee - an inhabitant of the central part and the west of Thailand, the south of Indochina,
  • P.c. vauriеi Rirli - a resident of northeast India,
  • P.c. ziaratensis Whistler is an inhabitant of the central part and the south of Afghanistan, the west of Pakistan.

The great tit is an inhabitant of the entire territory of the Middle East and Europe, is found in North and Central Asia, inhabits some areas of North Africa. Fifteen subspecies of the great tit have a slightly different habitat:

  • P.m. rhródite - inhabitant of southern Italy, southern Greece, islands of the Aegean Sea and Cyprus,
  • P.m. blanfordi is an inhabitant of the north of Iraq, the north, the north of the central part and the southwestern part of Iran,
  • P.m. bokharensis - an inhabitant of the territory of Turkmenistan, the north of Afghanistan, the south of the central part in Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan,
  • P.m. sorsus - an inhabitant of the territory of Portugal, southern Spain and Corsica,
  • P.m. eski - an inhabitant of the territories of Sardinia,
  • P.m. exсesus - an inhabitant of northwestern Africa, from the territory of the western part of Morocco to the northwestern part of Tunisia,
  • P.m. ferghanensis - a resident of Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan and the western part of China,
  • P.m. karustini - an inhabitant of southeastern Kazakhstan or the Dzungarian Alatau, the extreme northwestern part of China and Mongolia, Transbaikalia, the territories of the upper reaches of the Amur and Primorye, the northern part to the coastline of the Sea of ​​Okhotsk,
  • P.m. Karelini - a resident of southeast Azerbaijan and northwest Iran,
  • P.m. majоr - a typical inhabitant of continental Europe, north and east of the central part, and northern part of Spain, the Balkans and northern Italy, Siberia to the east up to Lake Baikal, southward to the Altai Mountains, eastern and northern Kazakhstan, is found in Asia Minor, ha Caucasus and Azerbaijan except for the southeastern part,
  • P.m. Mallorsay - inhabitant of the Balearic Islands,
  • P.m. nevtoni - an inhabitant of the British Isles, the Netherlands and Belgium, as well as the northwestern part of France,
  • P.m. niethаmmеri - inhabitant of the territories of Crete,
  • P.m. terraesanctae - inhabitant of Lebanon, Syria, Israel, Jordan and north-eastern part of Egypt,
  • P.m. turkstaniсus is an inhabitant of the southeastern part of Kazakhstan and the southwestern territories of Mongolia.

In the wild, representatives of the species are found in a variety of forest zones, most often in the most open areas and at the edges, and also settle along the banks of natural reservoirs.

Eastern or Japanese tit is represented by nine subspecies:

  • P.m. amamiensis - inhabitant of the north of the Ryukyu Islands,
  • P.m. сommixtus - inhabitant of the south of China and the north of Vietnam,
  • P.m. dagletensis - an inhabitant of the island of Ullyndo near Korea,
  • P.m. kagoshimae - inhabitant of the south of the island of Kyushu and the islands of Goto,
  • P.m. Minor - an inhabitant of the east of Siberia, south of Sakhalin, the east of the central part and northeast of China, Korea and Japan,
  • P.m. nigrilоris - inhabitant of the south of the Ryukyu Islands,
  • P.m. nubiolus - inhabitant of eastern Myanmar, northern Thailand and the northwest of Indochina,
  • P.m. okinaway - inhabitant of the center of the Ryukyu Islands,
  • P.m. tibetanus is an inhabitant of southeastern Tibet, the southwest and south of central China, northern Myanmar.

The green-backed tit has spread in Bangladesh and Bhutan, in China and India, and also inhabits Nepal, Pakistan, Thailand and Vietnam. The natural habitats of this species are boreal forests and forest zones in temperate latitudes, subtropics and tropical flat humid forests.

Tit ration

During the period of active reproduction, tits feed on small invertebrates, as well as their larvae. Feathered orderlies destroy a huge variety of forest pests. Nevertheless, the basis of the feed ration of any tit during this period is most often represented:

  • butterfly caterpillars
  • spiders
  • weevils and other bugs,
  • dipteran insects, including flies, mosquitoes and midges,
  • half-winged living things, including bugs.

Titmouses also eat cockroaches, orthopterans in the form of grasshoppers and crickets, small dragonflies, reticuliformes, earwigs, ants, ticks and millipedes. An adult bird is quite able to enjoy bees, from which the sting is previously removed. With the onset of spring, tits can prey on such prey as bat dwarfs, which, after leaving winter hibernation, remain still inactive and quite accessible to birds. Chicks are fed, as a rule, by caterpillars of all kinds of butterflies, whose body length is not more than 10 mm.

In autumn and winter, the role of various plant feeds, including hazel seeds and European beech, significantly increases in the diet of titmouse. Birds feed on fields and sown areas with waste grain of corn, rye, oats and wheat.

The birds that live in the northwestern part of Russia often feed on the fruits and seeds of some of the most common plants:

  • ate and pine
  • maple and linden,
  • lilacs
  • birches
  • horse sorrel
  • pikulnikov,
  • burdock
  • red elderberry
  • irgi
  • mountain ash
  • blueberries
  • hemp and sunflower.

The main difference between the great tit and other species of this genus, including the Blue Tit and Muscovite, is the lack of their own stocks for the winter. Such a dexterous and very mobile bird can very skillfully find feed that was collected and hidden in the fall by other birds. According to experts, sometimes representatives of the species Great Tit can eat various carrion.

To feed, tits often visit bird feeders in cities and parks where they feed on sunflower seeds, food leftovers and breadcrumbs, as well as butter and pieces of unsalted lard. Also, forage is obtained in the crowns of trees, usually on the lower tiers of plants and in the foliage of undergrowth or shrubs.

It is interesting! It is in the great tit that among all passerines there is the largest list of objects for hunting, and having killed a red-tip, an ordinary oatmeal, a pied flycatcher, a yellow-headed king or a bat, a feathered predator easily pecks their brain from them.

Fruits that have too hard shells, including nuts, are first broken by the beak. Great tit is predatory. Representatives of this species are well known as permanent and typical scavengers feeding on the carcasses of various ungulate mammals.

Breeding and offspring

In our country, Bolshaki, which are monogamous birds and having been broken in pairs, are beginning to co-actively and actively nest for themselves. Representatives of this species are also raised together. Birds prefer to nest in places with sparse deciduous forest, along river banks, in park areas and in gardens. Coniferous forest zones are not suitable for nesting tits. Tit nests are placed in niches on old buildings or in hollows of fairly old trees. Also, sometimes you can see representatives of the species in the old nests, abandoned by the former residents, which are located at a height of two to six meters. Very willingly, birds of this species settle in comfortable nests made by humans.

For the construction of nests by birds, thin blades of grass and twigs are used, as well as small roots of plants and even moss. The inner part of the nesting area is covered with wool, cobwebs, cotton, fluff and feathers, in the middle of which a special tray is squeezed out, covered with horsehair or wool. The size of the tit nest may vary depending on the characteristics of the nesting place, but the dimensions of the inner tray are always approximately the same: at a depth of 40-50 mm, its diameter is 40-60 mm.

One egg laying consists of a maximum of fifteen white-stained eggs with a slight sheen. Relatively numerous specks and reddish-brown dots are scattered along the surface of the egg shell, which form a kind of corolla on the blunt side of the egg. Great tits lay eggs twice a year. The first egg laying occurs in the last decade of April or at the very beginning of May, and the second - approximately in the middle of the summer period.

The eggs hatch by the female a little less than a couple of weeks. All this time, the male takes care of the female and feeds her. The first couple of days of hatched chicks is covered with grayish fluff, so the female does not leave her nest, but heats the offspring that were born with her warmth.

The male during this period feeds not only the female, but also all his offspring. Only after the body of the chicks is covered with typical feathers, the female and male together begin to feed their large and incredibly gluttonous offspring.

It is interesting! In the mating season, tits are not funny and restless birds, but birds that are very aggressive towards any of their brethren.

After about seventeen days, the body of the chicks is completely covered with feathers, so they become ready for complete independence, but another week the young birds prefer to stay directly next to their parents, who periodically try to feed them. Such young titmouse reaches full puberty only closer to a year.

Natural enemies

Tits are very useful birds, both in horticulture and in traditional forestry. One of the natural factors that negatively affect the total number of all species of tits is hunger during the winter frosts. It is from the lack of feed in the winter that a huge number of representatives of the genus die every year. Also in nature, adult martens, weasels, as well as some wild forest cats and domestic representatives of the cat family, fairly large owls and other flying predators are actively hunting all kinds of tits.

Population and species status

To date, many subspecies of tits are quite numerous, therefore, they do not particularly need security or protective measures. However, there are quite rare and less common species that are currently almost on the verge of extinction.

For example, the Baleen Tit (Panurus biarmicus), which is a rare and poorly studied southern Palaearctic bird with spotted range, is currently not only subject to protection along with other small insectivorous birds, but is also listed in the Red Book of the Republic of Khakassia. Yew or Japanese tit is also included in the Red Book of Russia today, and representatives of this species are sporadically found only in the South Kuril Islands, so the rarity is due to the obvious limited range.

Great tit or big tit

This species is the largest tit with a long tail. She has a classic bright plumage: a yellow tummy with a black “tie”, a hat of blue-and-black feathers, white cheeks and a white spot on the back of the head. Around the neck of a big man is a black stripe. The back is gray-blue or greenish. The plumage of the wings and tail - in blue tones. Females are slightly lighter than males. Young birds are distinguished by olive-brown plumage of the head.

Gray tit

The gray tit is distinguished from the great tit by a white or grayish tummy. On their heads, the birds also have a characteristic black cap with a white spot on the back of the head and cheeks. The plumage of the wings is dominated by a smoky brown color. The gray tit lives in Asia.

Male and female: main differences

Sexual dimorphism in tits is weakly expressed. Females, as a rule, are slightly lighter than males, but in general their color coincides. An interesting feature: the longitudinal black strip on the belly of birds in males expands to the tail, and in females, on the contrary, it becomes thinner. Young plumages are also slightly different, with olive-brown colors prevailing in its color scheme.

Cell requirements

The cage should not stand in bright sunlight and drafts.

The titmouse will need two drinkers - one for drinking, and the second for swimming. These birds simply adore water procedures. And they quickly get used to the hands of the owner, they can even be hand-fed.

What to feed

As in nature, at home, tits need mixed feed. An excellent basis for the diet can be a mixture of white crackers, carrots and chicken eggs, as well as various cereal mixtures. A real treat for the titmouse is flour worms. They should be added to food especially often during the nesting period.

By the way, if you let the titmouse out of the cage, she will surely try to find food for herself - whether it is gingerbread, or cookies.

Do they breed in captivity?

If a pair of blueberries coexists in one enclosure, then over time birds can begin to nest, for which they need to leave building material - twigs, blades of grass, moss. In one clutch in nature, a female tit can have up to 15 eggs. In captivity, as a rule, less. The female hatches eggs for 13 days, and then the chicks grow up for about 3 weeks. All this time, the male takes care of the spouse and offspring.

Interesting Facts

  • There are two versions about the origin of the name of the genus "tit." The first indicates the blue color, which is inherent in the Blue Tit, blue songbirds, previously also belonging to the genus tit. And the second option ascribes the name of the genus to the character of the song of these birds, in which you can hear the long “siii-siii”.
  • Titmouse never make their own stocks for the winter, but it’s very easy to find and eat food stocks made by other birds,
  • Usually friendly and friendly tits during the period of nesting and hatching eggs become quite aggressive and drive strangers from their territory,
  • Tits are not in vain called the orderlies of the forest, so one pair of tits during the nesting period protects at least 40 trees from pests.
  • Tits live in nature for 1-3 years, and can live in captivity even up to 15 years.

Singing

In the pleasant twittering of titties, experts distinguish more than 40 different sound combinations. Males especially like to sing and chirp almost all year round, quieting down a bit only in winter.

Their song consists of high-profile "qi-qi-qi-pi", "ying-chi-ying-chi", "pin-pin-chrrrzh", "zin-zi-ver", "zin-zin" and generally very diverse with endless overflows and a variety of intonations.

Pin
Send
Share
Send