Coal Tit (Periparus ater)

Coal Tit Video

Coal Tit Facts

  • Scientific name: Periparus ater

  • Family: Tits (Paridae)

  • Wingspan: 17 - 21cm (7 - 8")

  • Diet: Mainly seeds, nuts and insects

  • Feed with: Sunflower hearts, sunflower seeds/mixes and peanuts

  • Habitat: Coal tits are sedentary birds and can be located in parks, gardens, conifers and woodland.

  • Lifespan: 2 Years

  • Coal Tit Characteristics

    The coal tit is the smallest of its family and is characterised by black and white features, quite distinct from its more colorful cousin, the common European blue tit. With a black crown, the coal tit also exhibits white cheeks and nape as well as white coloured bars on the wings. It would be difficult to distinguish the coal tit from other similar small tits such as the marsh and willow if not for the conspicuous white patch on the back of the bird's neck.

    Conservation Status of the Coal Tit

    The Coal Tit is classified as Least Concern (LC) on the IUCN Red List



    The Coal Tit is classified as Least Concern

    Coal Tit Feeding

    Attracting coal tits to your garden is relatively straight forward as they enjoy feeding on a variety of straight foods and mixtures, including peanuts, seed mixtures and fat balls. They are also rather keen on insects, and dried mealworm can often hit the spot with coal tits.

    Should food be abundant, coal tits have a habit of hoarding for later. They will hide their food in multiple locations for tougher times ahead, especially in preparation for the winter months. Great tits often observe coal tits stashing their food away, and it's not uncommon to find this store raided.

    Coal Tit Audio

    Coal Tit Breeding & Nesting

    Coal tits have a habit of nesting in small holes such as those found in trees, as well as mouse holes. Their nesting patterns are similar to blue tits, but the method in which nests are built different slightly. Coal tit have a habit of lining their nests with moss, whereas blue tits don't.

    The very small (15mm by 12mm) eggs are speckled with reddish-brown dots and are incubated by the female alone. Both parents help to feed the young. It is common for coal tits to breed in mid-April and for the young to hatch around 18 days later.

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