Bushtit

Photo: Don Enright

Common Name

Bushtit

Species Names

Psaltriparus minimus

Appearance

7-11 cm length | 4-6 gm weight

A tiny, compact songbird, the Bushtit is one of the smallest perching birds in North America. It has a large head, a very small bill, a short neck and a long tail.

They are grey-brown with a darker tail and wings and a lighter underside. Coastal birds might have a darker cap while inland birds tend to be paler and have a dark mask. Their bill and legs are dark and males have dark eyes while the female has yellow eyes.

Habitat/Behaviour

Insectivore | Woodland

Insectivore: an animal whose diet consists mostly of insects.

The American Bushtit inhabits open or semi-open woodlands, scrubby areas, parks and gardens.

The Bushtit forages in mixed-species feeding flocks. They feed on insects, spiders and larvae as well as a small amounts of fruit and berries.

Breeding

Monogamous | Pendulum-shaped nest | 5-7 colour eggs | 1-2 sets of young per year

Bushtits make elaborate, woven, jug-shaped or gourd-shaped, hanging nests. They use small twigs and other materials as a base, spider webs as an adhesive to hold it together, and moss and lichen to insulate and camouflage. If the nest is disturbed, the pair may abandon the nest altogether, and even each other, before finding a new mate and starting all over.

Events

Where can you learn more during Vancouver Bird Week?

 

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For all Vancouver Bird Week events and activities click here. 

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