Blue Tit Diet and Size: Feeding Habits, Predators, and Measurements

Blue Tit Diet and Size: Feeding Habits, Predators, and Measurements

Blue tits are a common sight in gardens all over the UK and throughout mainland Europe. There are an estimated 3.5 million pairs in the UK spread across gardens, parks, woodlands and hedges.

This number swells to around 15 million during the colder winter months as many European blue tits migrate to the warmer climes of the UK.

What Does A Blue Tit Eat

person holding sunflower seeds

Blue tits eat a wide and varied diet, during spring they will eat tree buds. In summer their diet consists of small insects, caterpillars, spiders and millipedes.

During the winter months when insects are not so easy to find, they will eat berries and nuts and frequent garden bird feeders. If you have blue tits resident in your garden, you can feed them peanuts, seeds, suet, sunflower seeds and mealworms.

Did you know: The yellow colouration on the underside of a blue tit depends on how many yellow/green caterpillars it has eaten.

What To Feed A Baby Blue Tit

It is generally best to leave the feeding of baby blue tits to their parents as they know exactly what to feed their young chicks to help them grow and develop as they should. The parents will be feeding their babies on caterpillars and small insects.

Having said that, if you find that the parents have been missing for longer than a day, it’s possible that they have been taken by a predator. If that is the case and there are baby blue tits still in the nest and you want to try to rear them yourself, you can feed them on chopped up mealworms, or raw mincemeat cut into small maggot sized pieces.

Use a pair of tweezers to feed the baby blue tit and if you don’t have any mince or mealworms you can try feeding them cat food.

How Much Does A Blue Tit Weigh

When first hatched, a baby blue tit will weigh around 1 gram which is around 10% of an adult blue tit which weighs around 10 grams. So a baby blue tit weighs around 1 gram while an adult weighs around 10 grams.

So for comparison, a baby blue tit weighs around the same as 1 paperclip, while an adult blue tit weighs around the same as a graphite pencil.

How Big Is A Blue Tit

Female Blue Tit

An adult blue tit weighs around 10 to 11 grams and is around 12 cm from head to tail with a wingspan of around 18 cm. 

They are among the smallest birds found in the UK with the goldcrest being even smaller coming in at 8.5 to 9.5 cm in length with a wingspan of 13.5 to 15.5 cm.

What Eats A Blue Tit

Like all wild birds, the blue tit is under constant threat from predators. The main predator of blue tits is the sparrow hawk. But this is not their only problem, woodpeckers are known to prey on young blue tits as are squirrels, rats, stoats, weasels and domestic cats.

This is particularly true during the fledgling stage of their development when they are at their most vulnerable.

SEE ALSO: Blue Tit Life Cycle: From Nest Building to Flight

Frequently Asked Questions

What does a blue tit eat?

Blue tits eat a wide and varied diet; during the early spring they eat tree buds and the first emerging insects, then as summer progresses they eat small insects, caterpillars, spiders and millipedes. In winter they will eat nuts and berries and are often found frequenting bird feeders where they will eat seeds, peanuts, sunflower seeds and mealworms.

What should I feed a baby blue tit?

It is generally best to leave the feeding of baby blue tits to their parents, who will feed them around 100 caterpillars per day. However, if you were to find a baby blue tit abandoned by its parents, you can feed it on mealworms, raw mincemeat or cat food.

How much does a blue tit weigh?

An adult blue tit weighs around the same as a graphite pencil-10 grams. A baby blue tit weighs around the same as a paperclip-1 gram.

How big is a blue tit?

An adult blue tit weighs around 10 to 11 grams and is around 12 cm from head to tail with a wingspan of around 18 cm.. 

What eats a blue tit?

The blue tit’s main predator is the sparrow hawk, but they are also predated by woodpeckers, squirrels, rats, weasels, stoats and cats.

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