BIRD OF THE WEEK — TUFTED TITMOUSE — PLANET EARTH BIRD WORLD group

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BIRD OF THE WEEK

TUFTED TITMOUSE

SCIENTIFIC NAME: Baeolophus bicolor
POPULATION: 11 million
TREND: Increasing
HABITAT: Resident in eastern deciduous forests.

The active and agile Tufted Titmouse is easily recognized by its jaunty crest of gray feathers, big black eyes, and rust-colored flanks. This familiar bird feeder visitor often joins mixed foraging flocks with other common backyard birds such as the White-breasted Nuthatch and Black-capped Chickadee.

The Tufted Titmouse’s name derives from the Old English words “tit” and “mase,” basically meaning “small bird.” The word “mase” eventually became obsolete and this part of the name morphed into the familiar word “mouse,” a convenient switch because the quick-moving little gray bird probably reminded people of the small rodent.

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