Nuthatch

Scientific name: Sitta europaea

Did you know: The Nuthatch is known for its unique ability to walk head-first down tree trunks, a feat few other birds can manage!

What Do Nuthatches Look Like? (how to identify them)

Nuthatches are charming, plump birds, similar in size to Great Tits. 

They possess a striking blue-grey back and a contrasting whitish underside, accentuated by chestnut flanks and undertail. Their most distinctive feature is a bold black stripe across their head, coupled with a long, pointed bill and sturdy, short legs.

Differences Between Male And Female Nuthatches

Males and females are similar in appearance, but keen observers might note subtle variations in the intensity of their underpart colours, particularly during the breeding season.

What Do Nuthatches Eat?

Nuthatches have a diverse diet, feeding primarily on insects, nuts, and seeds, including hazelnuts, acorns, and beechmast. Their strong bills are adept at cracking open tough shells to access the nutritious kernels inside.

Where Do Nuthatches Live? (inc. migration info)

These birds are residents throughout England and Wales and have recently expanded into southern Scotland. Nuthatches are typically found in woodlands and, occasionally, urban and suburban areas. 

Unlike many birds, they do not migrate and are usually found close to their birthplace.

Bird Calls & Songs (the unique voices of Nuthatches)

Nuthatches are vocal birds, using a variety of loud, simple songs and calls to communicate and mark their territory. Their song is often described as a series of whistles and trills.

Fun Nuthatch Facts (kid friendly)

  • Nuthatches can walk down trees head-first!
  • They use their strong bills to crack open tough nuts and seeds.
  • In the UK, they live in woodland areas but may visit gardens with bird feeders.
  • They are about the size of a Great Tit but have a more robust build.
  • Nuthatches plaster mud around their nest entrance to protect their young.
  • These birds are known for their loud, whistling calls.
  • You can find Nuthatches all year round in the UK, especially in old deciduous woodlands.
  • They nest in tree holes or nest boxes, sometimes reinforcing the entrance with mud.
  • The UK Nuthatch population has been increasing since the 1970s.
  • They lay up to eight eggs, and the nestlings are cared for by both parents.

Nuthatch Images

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Male
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Female
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Hatchling
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Nestling
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Chick
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Fledgling
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Juvenile

Facts About The Nuthatch

Diet: Insects, hazel nuts, acorns, beechmast and other nuts and seed.
Bird Family: Nuthatches
Length: 14 cm
Wingspan: 22.5-27 cm
Weight: 20-25 g
Scientific Name: Sitta europaea

The Nuthatch Can Be Seen In The UK During The Following Months

  • January
  • February
  • March
  • April
  • May
  • June
  • July
  • August
  • September
  • October
  • November
  • December