Tufted Titmouse (Baeolophus bicolor)


Song: A series of loud, clear, whistled phrases, repeated multiple times. Each individual male Titmouse has between 8-12 song variants in his repertoire. Most of these will be shared with his immediate neighbors and he will often match song variants with his neighbors when singing concurrently (Schroeder 1983).

Female titmice also sing, but much less frequently than males, and their singing is usually confined to the height of the breeding season, whereas males will sing throughout the year (Brackbill 1970).



Tufted Titmouse song variant 1, May 23, 2010, Kettle Moraine State Park, South Unit, Waukesha County, Wisconsin.



Tufted Titmouse song variant 2, May 23, 2010, Kettle Moraine State Park, South Unit, Waukesha County, Wisconsin.


Wing Vibration: Titmice vibrate their wings vigorously in a variety of situations, including courtship, copulation, and aggressive encounters (Offutt 1965). This vibration display produces an audible fluttering sound, and is sometimes accompanied by faint liquid calls.



Tufted Titmouse, wing vibration display, March 6, 2011, Kettle Moraine State Park, South Unit, Waukesha County, Wisconsin.


References


Brackbill, Hervey. 1970. Tufted Titmouse Breeding Behavior. The Auk, 87: 522-536

Offutt, G. C. 1965. Behavior of the Tufted Titmouse before and during the nesting season. Wilson Bulletin 77:382-387.

Schroeder, D. J. and R. H. Wiley. 1983. Communication with Shared Song Themes in Tufted Titmice. Auk 100(2):414-424.