Long-tailed Tit – 1994

Aegithalos caudatusTitw Cynffon-hirBreeding resident

1984-88
Breeding confirmed109
Breeding probable35
Breeding possible51
No of tetrads occupied195 (of 478)
Percentage of tetrads40.8%

Mathew (1894) and Lockley et al. (1949) found the Long-tailed Tit to be a common resident.

Long-tailed Tits suffer high mortality during severe winters, the winters of 1949, 1962 and 1963 drastically reducing Pembrokeshire’s population, but numbers recoup during subsequent milder periods. The 1979 cold spell had less effect but did mean that the Breeding Birds Survey of 1984-1988 was conducted during a recovery period and fewer Long-tailed Tits were found during the earlier years than towards the end of the survey. An estimated average density of six to eight pairs per tetrad was reached by 1988, suggesting a total county population of between 1,100 and 1,600 pairs. They were commoner on two of the plots in 1989 than in 1988, so our county estimate probably does not represent the maximum population possible.

Long-tailed Tits have a tendency to ‘spill over’ to atypical habitat during the autumn, being seen swinging about the cliff faces of the outer coast, while a few have reached the offshore islands of Skomer and Skokholm. A flock of 30 was seen at Skomer on 12 October 1967.

Donovan J.W. & Rees G.H, 1994, Birds of Pembrokeshire

More about the Long-tailed Tit in Pembrokeshire