The Tufted Titmouse is a
hyperactive little bird of forests of the eastern United States. Active
during all seasons, it may even sing it's peter-peter-peter song during
the dead of winter. They readily come to feeders and have a strong
preference for sunflower seeds. They have been expanding their range to
the north in recent decades, a trend that may be helped by the abundance of bird
found in mature deciduous forest, but also found in suburban areas if mature
trees are present.
Diet: Varied, although insects make up a large portion of the diet. Will also
eat spiders, snails, fruits, berries, nuts, and seeds.
Behavior: Very active when foraging, hopping from branch to branch, hanging upside down,
and sometimes hovering in flight. Will cache food items for later
retrieval and consumption.
Breeding: No confirmed breeding in South Dakota,
although breeding does occur in surrounding states. Within their breeding
range, the Tufted Titmouse nests in a natural cavity in a tree, or in an old
woodpecker hole. The nesting cavity is lined with softer material, with a
preference for animal hair. Tufted Titmouse may even pluck the hair from
living mammals to use for the nest. The female lays 5 or 6 eggs, and she
alone incubates them. When the eggs hatch, the female initially stays with
the young while the male feeds the family. Soon both parents help to feed
the young. The young leave the nest after about 16 days.
permanent resident throughout its range in the eastern United States.
Feeders: Will attend feeders for sunflower seeds
Cornell Lab of Ornithology - Tufted Titmouse