Blue Tits nesting habits,

Homes for Wildlife

Homes for Wildlife
If you love the creatures in your garden, you'll love our Homes for Wildlife project. This is the place to ask and answer questions about making your backyard wildlife-friendly.

Blue Tits nesting habits,

  • February bird chipping away at nest box entrance,April box occupied, May young birds fledged as I think as normal.October Blue Tit back chipping away at box entrance and inspecting interior.

    I have never noticed this behavior before at this time of year.Is this normal.

  • Hi Jonny

    I wonder if its marking the entrance to show it is going to use it for roosting in at night over winter.

  • Hi JD, thanks for posting, i've edited your title a bit and will move this post to a more appropriate forum in a mo'.

    This is a regular observation, it is part of the site selection process for blue tits, it may seem early but some resident blue tits start preparing for next spring during the autumn and winter. This could be one of the ones from earlier in the year returning or a newcomer staking a claim on the box and the territory. Keep watching them over winter, it may be that you witness some blue tit territorial warfare! It is likely that they will use the box for roosting over winter and hopefully they will stick around to breed in the spring

  • That's such an interesting read Ian,  we have a lot of BT's in the garden  (although the garden generally quiet of birds at the moment whilst natural food is still available in the countryside) and I have often wondered about territorial behaviour within this species, so like you suggest to Jonny, I will keep an eye on their behaviour during the winter months as we have 9 boxes to be disputed over  LOL    although not all, of course, will necessarily be used.  

    Good luck with your garden birds Jonny and the thrill of observing them.

  • Thank you Alan.this is my first time on the chat facility.the Blue Tit box is on my garage wall in my backyard onto which I can veiw from my livingroom window.thanks again for your information.

  • Jump right in and join us Jonny i've had a look on your profile page and i see you've had a Woodpecker in your garden, if you have any photos you want to share you can post them in any forum.

  • Hi. Found my way on here as I wanted to check something: I've just spotted blue tits in the nesting box. I had intended to clean it out as I've not done so from spring: is it now too late e.g. if this is returning pair or new pair, or if they are thinking of using it to hide from our current crummy weather !

  • Hi there,

    Can anyone tell me why 2 blue tits are going in and out of my nest box, which is located on the wall outside the kitchen window.  It all started before Christmas. It seems that the main blue tit seems to be feeding the one inside, as it has been flying back and forth to the box. They don't seem to be pecking away at the box either.  This morning they seemed to being having a fight as if to say stay out, but the other forced himself him inside the box. Can anyone help me out with this unusual behaviour as I have never seen it before.

    Cheers Martin.

  • Hi Stuart and Martin welcome to the community.

    They could be fighting over a future nesting site or maybe fighting over a winter roost which they use overnight, i think some on here have camera boxes and have seen them roost overnight and i think mainly alone.

    Someone may have better advice.

  • We fixed a new box with a webcam in it in February and until today, nothing happened. Today, looking out of the kitchen window, we saw a blue tit showing an interest in the entrance.  So, I turned the camera on to look and was excited to see a few bits and pieces of grass etc on the bottom of the box. Then, suddenly, a bird hopped in with another bit of grass.  it shuffled around then hopped out. Then I could see a beak tapping and tapping at the box entrance, from the outside.  

    That was about 3 hours ago.  They don't seem to have come back in since then.  I am hoping that they will, obviously!

  • Help. My daughter has a nest box just outside her kitchen window used by blue tits for years. She is getting a big new extension to her house starting next month and has been talking all winter about where she might move the nest box. Today she found that the blue tits are back and using the box. Will they continue to use it if its moved now, 10 metres across the lawn and attached to the summer house?

  • Hi Marylin

    Sadly i think when the box is moved they will desert the nest, i think it only fair to also tell you it is illegal to disturb or interfere with any nesting bird.

  • Hi

    About 2 years ago I built a nesting box and fixed to the fence in my back garden near a bush so it was slightly hidden. Nothing came near it apart from snails. Last Autumn I gave up on the idea of it being used and moved it out into the open near our patio, about 5 feet from the ground on the fence.

    In the last few days we have seen a pair of blue tits flying in and out of the box and one of them goes in more regularly than the other and seems to be cleaning it out.

    This morning another blue tit arrived on scene and was chased away by the pair.

    Does this sound like behaviour of a pair of birds that are going to nest?

    My other concern is when the weather improves we will be using the back garden more regularly. I would like to know if this will be an issue or do blue tits like to be in a box that is in the open with people near by?

    Our back garden is relatively small (36ftx24ft).

  • Hi blue tit watchers! Our nest box was used last year, situated on the side of our back extension, and about 10 foot from the large kitchen window. The area below is a small patio where we sit out, and no problems there Adrian :)

    End of last season we upgraded to a RSPB nestcam, and lined it with soft hay for winter roosting - ignored! This year a pair of blue tits did the usual - tapping at entrance, hopping in and out - they gave the hay the thumbs down, and carried every last shred out of the box. Happily they built and how fascinating just watching that process. We loved seeing them drop material, and then do a twirling dance with outstretched wings to push it out to the edges - and later pushing with their little backs. The final touch was loads of feathers strewn across the top of the nest like a duvet.

    Success - hatching started today!!! It looks like the nest cup spreads outwards at deeper level, and as hatchlings appear, they are moved out to the periphery, whilst the unhatched eggs stay central. The male is full steam ahead with bringing caterpillars, passing to the female who cheeps the news and feeds the hatchlings.

    I am just so pleased I recently retired so I can watch this marvel unfold!

    But who makes the coffee

  • Hi Tim welcome to the community

    I hope all goes well with your Blue Tits, you need a Coffee machine at the side of your chair lol