Face off – Great Tit (Parus major)   Leave a comment

Great Tit 2_sRGB

This is one of those subtly hilarious pictures. The unusual name of this bird just accentuates the humour 🙂

Like all tits, these also nest in cavities – usually a hole in a tree. They are quite content with nesting in man made bird nests and hence have become a willing subject for studying behavior of birds. The colour of the male bird’s breast has been shown to correlate with stronger fertility. Higher levels of carotenoids increase the intensity of the yellow coloration of the breast. Since Carotenoids cannot be synthesized by the bird and have to be obtained from food, a bright colour in a male also demonstrates his ability to obtain good nutrition. The width of the male’s ventral stripe, varies with individuals and females apparently prefer males with wider stripes. Not sure if the modern male tie was inspired by such observations 🙂

Keeping the pun aside, this appears to be the British sub-species.

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