Article and photos by Kathryn Mann
I think the Tufted Titmouse is the most adorable looking bird in Oklahoma. They are a small bird, six inches in length, and are usually heard before they are seen. Their song is a lively whistle that sounds like "peter-peter-peter".
Tufted Titmouse enjoying the sunshine
Most Tufted Titmice spend their entire life within a two mile radius of where they were born. In the wild they typically live less than three years, but some have lived as long as 13.
Tufted Titmice have a distinctive crest of gray feathers on the top of their head. They have a black forehead with grey around their eyes. Their bodies are gray on top and white to light gray on their chest and belly. They are rust or chestnut-colored on their sides. Males and females look the same.
Tufted Titmouse on the Pathfinder Trail in Bartlesville
Tufted Titmice mate for life and live together as a pair.
The primary food source of the Tufted Titmouse is seeds and nuts. They have a short and powerful black bill that they use to crack open seeds and shells.
Unlike most birds they do not eat all the food they find at once, but store much of it in the crevices of trees or buried in the ground for later use.
This Tufted Titmouse came closer to me after I whistled to him
Tufted Titmice are very curious birds. If you softly talk or whistle to one it often will come closer to determine who is talking to it.