I'm putting this page together in April 2005, in a state of giddy excitement, as blue tits have been building a nest in the garden nest box for the very first time. They're so excitable themselves, you can't help but feel similarly enthusiastic. So they've been darting about in and out of the nest box, and I've been darting about taking photos of them and then running upstairs to write these pages and upload the photos.

I've been wanting to add a page about blue tits for some time, but they've been difficult to photograph until now. Below are some general observations of these birds in the garden, and another page follows with more photos of the nest box activity. If there's more to report, and more photos to add, I'll add more pages.

Blue tits in the garden

Blue tits have in recent years been regular visitors to the garden, and in 2004 there seemed to be an increase in numbers.

The blue tits brightened up the winter garden, as they seemed particularly interested in the Mahonia x media 'Charity' that was flowering in a pot in Kitchen Corner. From the window they could be seen acrobatically negotiating the large yellow flowerheads, clinging on to the flowers, often upside down, and chattering away as they do.

Blue tit in winter, on Mahonia Blue tit in winter, upside down, investigating Mahonia flowers

They are very noisy birds, considering their small size. Everything they do is accompanied by joyful vocals, as if it's all tremendously exciting. For this, you can't fail to love them, as they dash around the garden.

Blue tit in the house

One morning in 2003 I discovered a blue tit in our bathroom. This was obviously quite a shock. I opened a window and thankfully the bird escaped unharmed, but I was left wondering how it got in, as all the windows were closed at night.

At the time, we were in the process of refurbishing the bathroom, and various bits of old pipework had been removed, including an overflow pipe, so there was a very small hole still in the brickwork of the outside wall. Blue tits apparently like holes in trees, and so I deduced that this was how it had got in to the house. To our urban blue tit a hole in a brick wall is similar to a hole in a tree, I guess.

The blue tit was presumably very surprised to find itself in our bathroom, but not half as surprised as I was, when I walked into the bathroom first thing in the morning, still not quite awake, with a blue tit flying about around my head.

Blue tits in the nest box

The hole in the bathroom wall was eventually filled, but nearby on the same wall is a nest box, with a similar-sized hole in its front. It's right beside one of the kitchen windows, and the other nest boxes are also visible from windows downstairs, so we've been able to see the birds investigating - what appeared to be a tour of the entire nest box selection. Eventually they chose one.

More about the nesting blue tits, and (lots) more photos

Blue tit in flight, leaving nest box

All photos are © www.turning-earth.co.uk.

Blue tits: 1 |2
The pair of blue tits at the nest box - 1

The pair of blue tits at the nest box - 2

The pair of blue tits at the nest box - 3