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Long Tailed-Tits in Ireland

Long-Tailed Tit

The Long-Tailed Tit is a widespread resident throughout Ireland. It is is easily recognisable with its distinctive colouring and a long tail that is longer than it's body. It is also distinguished by it's undulating flight.

The shoulders and underparts of Long-Tailed Tits are pinkish. The head has a white crown with black marks above the eyes and into the nape. They also have red eye rings and a very small black beak. The long tail is black and white tail is the longest tail of any British bird pro rata to its body. The legs are black/brown in colour. Juvenile Long-Tailed Tits lack pink and have grey-black cheeks.

Long-Tailed Tits are gregarious and noisy residents and gather in small, excitable flocks of about 20 birds that flit from tree to tree. Technically Long-Tailed tits are not true tits as they are part of the Aegithalidae family (as opposed to the Paridae family).

Irish Name for Long-Tailed Tit

The Irish word for Long-Tailed Tit is Meantán earrfhada.

Long-Tailed Tit Feeding

Long-Tailed Tits are omnivorous feeding mainly on insects, seeds and nuts. They are particularly partial to the larvae of butterflies and moths.

They will also visit bird tables and feeders in domestic gardens yo feed on peanuts, other seeds and fat.

Long-Tailed Tits Nesting

Long-Tailed Tit nest with egg

Long-Tailed Tits breed throughout Ireland. They tend to favour deciduous woodlands, parks and gardens. These tits have a co-operative breeding strategy, with younger birds often helping the adults to raise youngest chicks.

The female Long-Tailed tits lays and incubates smooth and glossy eggs that are white with purplish-red spots, and are about 14 mm by 11 mm. The eggs weigh just 0.9 g of which 6 % is shell. Both adults feed the newly-hatched young and, already indicated, are often assisted by other birds, especially males, that have failed to breed that season.

Interesting Facts About Long-Tailed Tits

Long-Tailed Tit nest

The Long-Tailed Tit nest is one of the most intricate and unusual made by any Irish bird. It is made up of moss bound together by spider webs and covered in lichens.

The nest can take up to three weeks to build and may be lined with more than 2,000 feathers.

While the average lifespan of a Long-Tailed Tit is just two years an individual specimen lived for eight years, eight months, and five days - a record set in 2004.

Long-Tailed Tit

Scientific Name:
Aegithalos caudatus

Order:
Passeriformes

Family:
Aegithalidae

Irish Status:
Resident

Length: 14cm Wingspan: 18cm Weight: M & F: 9g

Call: Clxxxxx.

Habitat: Woodland, scrub, urban areas.

Diet: Mostly arthropods, esp bugs and eggs, larvae of butterflies/moths.

Nesting:
March to April
Breeding Age:
From 1 year
Number of Eggs:
6-8
No. of Clutches:
1
Incubation (days):
15-18
Fledging (days):
16-17
Lifespan:
2 years

Conservation Status in Ireland: Green

Long-Tailed Tit Range in Ireland

The Long-Tailed Tit is resident throughout most of Ireland.

Map of the range of Long-Tailed Tits in Ireland.

Arctic Terns in Ireland - Blue Tits in Ireland - Coal Tits in Ireland - Goldfinches in Ireland - Great Tits in Ireland - Grey Herons in Ireland - Jackdaws in Ireland - Longtailed Tits in Ireland - Magpies in Ireland - Mallards in Ireland - Mistle Thrushes in Ireland - Mute Swans in Ireland - Pheasants in Ireland - Puffins in Ireland - Robins in Ireland - Rooks in Ireland - Song Thrushes in Ireland - Starlings in Ireland - Swallows in Ireland - Swans in Tallaght - Swans Oil-Damaged - Waxwings in Ireland - Woodpigeons in Ireland - Wrens in Ireland

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