Animals

Did You Know? Amaze-wing Facts About The Long-Tailed Tit

Long-tailed tit facts are amusing to bird lovers.
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Don't we all love cute and small birds? The long-tailed tit (Aegithalos caudatus) is a tiny bird that is predominantly found in Europe and the Palearctic region. These small birds have a rounded body with predominantly black and white feathers that may often have gray or pink splotches. This is a social bird, so it's often found as a part of a bigger flock. Breeding mainly takes place in the spring months after the groups break from the huddle formed during wintertime. One of the highlights of the breeding season is its nesting process, as the bird makes a beautiful nest made of different materials. The main food source for this bird are insects, but it will appreciate seeds as food, especially during the fall and winter season. A great thing about this bird is its rising population in its natural habitat. Keep on reading to learn more interesting long-tailed tit facts. Also, check out the articles on the painted bunting and the great tit.

Long-Tailed Tit

Fact File

What do they prey on?

Insects, arthropods, eggs, and larvae of moths and butterflies

What do they eat?

Omnivore

Average litter size?

4-12 eggs

How much do they weigh?

0.3 oz (8.6 g)

How long are they?

Head-body length - 5–6 in (13-15 cm)

Tail length - 3-3.5 in (7-9 cm)

How tall are they?

N/A

What do they look like?

Black and white with gray and pinkish splotches

Skin Type

Feathers

What are their main threats?

Crows, jays, raptors

What is their conservation status?

Least Concern

Where you'll find them

Deciduous forests, mixed woodland, edge habitats

Locations

Europe, Palearctic region

Kingdom

Animalia

Class

Aves

Scientific Name

Aegithalos caudatus

Family

Aegithalidae

Genus

Aegithalos

Long-Tailed Tit Interesting Facts

What type of animal is a long-tailed tit?

The long-tailed tit is a type of small bird.

What class of animal does a long-tailed tit belong to?

The long-tailed tit (Aegithalos caudatus) belongs to the class Aves and to the family Aegithalidae.

How many long-tailed tits are there in the world?

The population of mature individuals of the species is estimated to be between 40,000-80 milliom according to the IUCN.

Where does a long-tailed tit live?

The long-tailed tits are found in different parts of Europe as well as in some parts of Asia, which is mainly known as the Palearctic region. The bird is found all over Great Britain except the northernmost part, which is distinctly colder. This bird has also been seen in China and Japan. These birds aren't found in the United States.

What is a long-tailed tit's habitat?

The habitat choice of the long-tailed tits varies according to their geographical location. However, it is most commonly found in deciduous forests, scrub areas, farmland or near agricultural areas, and closer to hedges and bushes. The species is also known as the garden birds because of its fondness for human manicured gardens and parks. Sometimes, these birds may also inhabit coniferous forests.

Who do long-tailed tits live with?

You will find long-tailed tits living in groups or flocks of up to 20 birds. The bird species forage together to find bugs and twigs. During the winter months, several long-tailed tits roost together to keep themselves warm. As social species, the flocks also have hierarchies, and the power of a particular long-tailed tit bird determines if it spends the winter months huddling in the inside rings of the communal brood or on the outside perimeters. The long-tailed tit flocks usually break during the breeding season in the springtime.

How long does a long-tailed tit live?

The long-tailed tit is known for its short lifespan which lasts for around two or three years in the wild.

How do they reproduce?

The long-tailed tits mate with partners that are already present in their flock or group. During the spring months, the birds come out of the flock to form pairs to start the preparation for nesting and breeding. One of the most interesting things about the long-tailed tit is that the close relatives often help in taking care of the young as well as that of the nest. The nest is mostly built between February and March. During the breeding season, the adult female birds can lay up to 12 eggs. The long-tailed tit's eggs have reddish spots on them and are quite tiny. It takes around 13-17 days for the eggs to hatch and the young chicks to arrive. The juvenile bird is fed by the bird pairs and the relative birds who have lost their nests to predation. The young birds grow up quite fast and fledge just 18 days after birth.

What is their conservation status?

The long-tailed tit is currently enlisted as a species of Least Concern in the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List.

Long-Tailed Tit Fun Facts

What do long-tailed tits look like?

Kids love to read long-tailed tit facts.

The long-tailed tit looks like a fluffed-up black and white round ball while it is perched on a tree branch. It is mainly known for the black and white plumage and its long tail. The color of the plumage may vary from having a pinkish tinge to being mostly white. The underbelly of this bird is mostly white or has a pink tinge, while the black feathers are mostly found on the wings. The body of the bird is round, and it has a small bill. The long-tailed tit is one of the birds with a long narrow tail which is often black in color. The body feathers of the young bird change and start to molt into adult feathers in the first winter. This bird may appear bigger because of the length of its tail. The small beady eyes of the bird also have a black color.

How cute are they?

The long-tailed tits are extremely cute because of their rounded body shape and their white plumage which form the key identification marks. The ones that have a pink tinge to their predominantly white feathers look even more beautiful.

How do they communicate?

Communication is mainly done with the help of the long-tailed tit song or contact calls. The bird mainly produces three types of calls which include a 'pit' call, the 'eez-eez-eez' or triple trill call, and the 'schnuur' call.

How big is a long-tailed tit?

The average head-body length of a long-tailed tit is 5–6 in (13-15 cm) with an additional 3-3.5 in (7-9 cm) coming from its long tail. It is slightly larger than the marsh tit that grows to the size of 4.7 in (12 cm).

How fast can a long-tailed tit fly?

The exact speed of the bird isn't known, but these garden birds tend to be sedentary in nature apart from when they are foraging for food.

How much does a long-tailed tit weigh?

The long-tailed tit is known for its extremely light weight. It is usually around 0.3 oz (8.6g).

What are their male and female names of the species?

There are no separate names for the male and the female long-tailed tits. Also, both the sexes look identical.

What would you call a baby long-tailed tit?

The baby or juvenile long-tailed tit is known as a chick.

What do they eat?

Even though the long-tailed tits do feed on plant materials at times, the main food source of these garden birds is different kinds of small insects. It happily feeds on arthropods as a juvenile and also as an adult. Some of its favorite food sources include moth and butterfly larvae. When you see a long-tailed tit in your garden or farmland, it might be foraging through the bushes and trees to find insects. During the fall and winter seasons, the bird moves to a seed and vegetable-based diet.

Are they friendly?

As a wild bird, the nature of the species can be quite unpredictable. Even though these garden birds aren't aggressive, they might not be friendly towards a human. It is better to observe them from a distance rather than going too close to them as irritation, or a perceived threat may turn into painful pecking.

Would they make a good pet?

Keeping a long-tailed tit as a pet is not as ideal as you might think. The birds are a part of the wildlife, and it is best to leave them alone rather than keeping them as pets. However, if you really find the species amusing, you may always set up appropriate feeders in gardens near your home.

Did you know...

These birds can also be known by the names of  Japanese long-tailed tit, Swedish long-tailed tit, white long-tailed tit, and long-tailed bushtit, depending on their location.

Though this bird is called a tit, it is more closely related to babblers found in India and south-east Asia.

How do you attract long-tailed tits to your garden?

If you want to attract long-tailed tits into your garden, make sure to set up feeders that have the correct seeds. As these are tiny birds, try small seeds as well as bread crumbs. You may find them especially in gardens during the winter months of December to March and in the spring season when the bird breeds. If you are confused about the food, try to buy a pre-mix that has been specially created for small birds or exactly for long-tailed tits. Make sure to check that the feeders are compatible with the small bill of the bird.

What does a long-tailed tits nest look like?

The long-tailed tit nests are elaborate and beautiful. During nesting, the birds may line the inside of the nest with up to 1,500-2000 feathers to increase insulation. The main construction materials for the nests include moss, lichen, spider egg cocoons, and feathers. The pairs may either make the nests on the branch of a tall tree or in a bramble bush. The nest is in the shape of a sack. The moss and spider egg cocoon fiber used in nesting help to add stability.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly animal facts for everyone to discover! Learn more about some other birds including the European robin and the hermit thrush.

You can even occupy yourself at home by drawing one of our long-tailed tit coloring pages.

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