A bird commonly seen in the Missouri landscape is the Tufted Titmouse. Part of the Chickadee family these small birds range from 5-7 inches in length. If you’re a watcher you know what a spirited little bird these are.
This tiny songbird prefers to live in hardwood areas and makes its home in the natural holes of rocks, logs, and trees. My backyard is nothing but forest and they flourish there but I have yet to find a nest.
Titmice have clutches of 3-9 eggs less than an inch in size. Incubation is 12-14 days and nesting last 15-16 days. Titmice will lay two broods per year in March and May for Missouri. The young, if they live past the nestling stage they have a lifespan of longer than two years. One reference stated they have been known to live up to 13 years.
Both parents care for their young and parents typically bond for life. Should one die they will find another mate.
While the Titmouse normally feeds on insects, it’s a favorite at the feeder where it feasts on seeds and grains. Titmice love black oil sunflower seeds which they clutch with their feet to bust up, one at a time, before flying off to stash their newly open morsel. They will choose the sunflower seeds over any other grain in the feeder, every time.
This fella you see here came out of the spring 2019 nests and has been a regular at the feeder since mamma pushed him out. If you watch your yard and feeders long enough you’ll begin to recognize your own resident birds.
Interesting fun fact:
A group of titmice are collectively known as a “banditry” and a “dissimulation” of titmice.
For more online information check out the Audubon Society. There you can find more detailed information, recordings of calls, and other interesting facts about these interesting little songbirds.
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