Tufted Titmouse

Baeolophus bicolor
Tufted Titmouse specimens on display in the exhibit "Birds of D.C."

A familiar songbird at bird feeders across the eastern U.S., the Tufted Titmouse is easily identified in most of its range by its sparrow-sized (6 inches) light grey body, chestnut flanks, and striking gray crest. In central Texas, this species is replaced by (and overlaps with) the Black-crested Titmouse (Baeolophus atricristatus), which has a dark crest and darker body. Males and females are similar at all seasons. The Tufted Titmouse is a common resident in the eastern United States, absent only from northernmost New England and Maine, northern Michigan and Wisconsin, and southernmost Florida. Historically this species had a more southern distribution; in the last century, increased numbers of bird feeders have helped the Tufted Titmouse expand its range northward. This species is a permanent resident across its range. Tufted Titmice are generally found in deciduous woodland habitats. More recently, they have also adapted to life in suburban and light urban settings, especially in areas with high concentrations of bird feeders. The Tufted Titmouse’s diet consists primarily of seeds, but Titmice will also take insects when available. Titmice are most easily observed while visiting bird feeders; in fact, many yards in this species’ range are visited by Titmice every day. In wilder areas, this species may be looked for in the forest canopy, often associating with Chickadees. This species is primarily active during the day.

DC Information

Abundant permanent resident, found throughout this area in arboreal situations. Breeds from April to early August in deciduous forests. The sexes are alike.

Distribution Map

distribution map for this species

Bird Vocalizations

Sound from xeno-canto. XC67169 Baeolophus bicolor (Tufted Titmouse)

Sound from xeno-canto. XC67170 Baeolophus bicolor (Tufted Titmouse)

Sound from xeno-canto. XC16868 Baeolophus bicolor (Tufted Titmouse)