The Tufted Titmouse (Titmice) is a clinging bird, one whose strong feet makes it easy for them to run up and down trees or grasp small surfaces while they grab an insect or gnat. Other clingers are Woodpeckers, Chickadees and Nuthatches.
A small, gray, mouse colored bird (some say it looks like a miniature Cardinal), it is distinctive for it’s “Peter-Peter-Peter” call. It’s common in deciduous forests, where it flits through canopies, hangs from the ends of twigs and frequents bird feeders.
A “polite” bird, it typically takes just one seed at a time from your feeder and carries it to a perch to crack it open.
Tufted Titmice are often the first birds you’ll see at your feeders, especially in Winter.
Like most other birds you want to attract, the Clingers love black oil sunflower seeds, or better yet, hulled out sunflower kernels. What’s good is that their clinging ability lets you provide sunflower kernels in feeders like the “Clingers Only™” that other birds have trouble using. Provide peanuts or tree nut pieces, and every “Clinger” in the neighborhood will make sure they stop and visit you!!
High-Energy Suet is a favorite of “Clingers”. Either provide the white suet from a butcher, or present one of the available cakes. The best cakes are those that contain only suet, peanuts, and peanut butter!! As “Clingers” can hang on a suet log feeder, suet logs are a great way to feed “Clingers”. Often, this is the most used feeder in a backyard! Ready to use Suet Plugs are available.
Clean, Fresh Water
The Tufted Titmouse does visit bird baths for drinking and bathing, but they need shallow baths because of their small size. You can add a smaller dish inside your regular birdbath, or scatter gravel or river rocks along the bottom.
They do like drippers, and are attracted to the noise and sparkles.
In the winter, be sure to provide a heated bird bath, since they do not migrate and need a source of fresh water year-round.
Safe, Secure Shelter (including nesting sites)
Tufted Titmouse build their nests in cavities, so putting up nest boxes is a good way to attract breeding titmice to your yard. Make sure you put it up well before breeding season. Attach a guard to keep predators from raiding eggs and young. They often line the inner cup of their nest with hair, sometimes directly plucked from living animals.