Bushtit

Psaltriparus minimus

Order

PASSERIFORMES

Family

Bushtit (Aegithalidae)

Code 4

BUSH

Code 6

PSAMIN

ITIS

Egg Color:

White



Number of Eggs:

5 - 7



Incubation Days:

12



Egg Incubator:

Both sexes



Nest Location:

4 - 25 feet above ground.



Nest Material:

Jug-shaped hanging pouch lined with vegetation and often secured by a spider web.



Migration:

Nonmigratory



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General

Bushtit: Tiny, acrobatic bird with gray-brown upperparts and paler underparts. Eyes are dark brown, bill is tiny, and tail is long. Coastal race has brown crown. Inland race has gray cap and brown ear patch. Black-eared race has black mask, ear patch. Weak fluttering flight.

Range and Habitat

Bushtit: Resident from extreme southwestern British Columbia, southern Idaho, southwestern Wyoming, and Colorado southward. Also found along the Pacific coast states and south into inland Mexico. The preferred habitats include coastal forests among second-growth alder thickets and edges of coniferous forests composed of maple, dogwood, and birch.

Breeding and Nesting

Bushtit: Five to seven white eggs are laid in a hanging, gourd-shaped nest with a side entrance near the top; nest is made of soft plant wool and lichens, and suspended in a bush or tree. Both parents incubate eggs for approximately 12 days.

Foraging and Feeding

Bushtit: Feeds on insects and spiders; also small fruit seeds.

Readily Eats

Suet

Vocalization

Bushtit: Calls of "tsip" and "pit" are constantly uttered. Alarm call is a high trill.

Similar Species

Bushtit: Juniper Titmouse and Oak Titmouse are larger and have head tufts and larger bills. Juvenile Verdin has shorter tail, gray-brown upperparts, and gray-brown wash on its sides.

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UnderpartsX

Belly, undertail coverts, chest, flanks, and foreneck.

UpperpartsX
Back, rump, hindneck, wings, and crown.
CapX
The area on top of the head of the bird.
CrownX
The crown is the top part of the birds head.
Ear patchX
Consists of soft, loose-webbed feathers on the side of the bird's head below and behind the eyes.
Parts of a Standing bird X
Head Feathers and Markings X
Parts of a Flying bird X