Oak Titmouse Bringing Food to the Nest

by Larry Jordan on May 17, 2011

Oak Titmouse (Baeolophus inornatus) photos by Larry Jordan

The Oak Titmouse (Baeolophus inornatus) is the first to take up residence on my bluebird trails.  They are just finishing up their one and only brood for the season.  I had two pair nesting on my property and this pair at Lema Ranch.

If you want to see some cute photos of mama bird and her nestlings from last season click here (as always, click on photos for full sized images).

This new parent was bringing what would probably be some of the last treats to the nest for their brood.

The female Oak Titmouse does all the incubation and brooding and the male brings her food during that time.  The chicks leave the nest about two to three weeks after hatching.

I didn’t realize until recently, having never seen the chicks leave the nest, that they don’t fly out!

According to Birds of North America Online, “Young leave the nest when capable of climbing to the cavity entrance; presumably capable of flying short distances, but do not fly out of the nest. Observations indicate that broodmates leave the nest simultaneously and tumble to the ground, apparently stimulated by “scolding” by the parent.”

Oak Titmice are very cute and very active.  They come to feeders with sunflower seed and also love suet.  Once they fledge however, the parents usually take the youngsters into the cover of the oak trees for about a week and feed them until they are able to forage for themselves.

You can see just how active these little birds are in this video. I put two short videos together to get a long enough clip to show their seemingly nervous behavior.

To see more great bird photos from around the world, check out World Bird Wednesday!

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{ 22 comments… read them below or add one }

TexWisGirl May 17, 2011 at 8:08 pm

they are cute little fidgeters! we have the tufted titmouse here and they’re equally as flitty! 🙂


gwendolen May 17, 2011 at 9:40 pm

Very cute indeed.

World Bird Wednesday looks interesting.


Amila May 18, 2011 at 2:24 am

A jolly-looking bird! It’s great that they take to your nest box!


MaineBirder May 18, 2011 at 3:26 am

Another great post with beautiful images Larry! Awesome video too!


Hilke Breder May 18, 2011 at 3:51 am

Terrific images and video of an adorable bird! Tufted Titmice are my favorite feeder birds. I have yet to see an Oak Titmouse.


fjällripan May 18, 2011 at 5:01 am

Beautiful photos of a very sweet bird. He looks so funny with his “hair” and the mouth full of food..


Larry May 18, 2011 at 5:05 am

@TexWisGirl they are fidgety all right. That is a perfect description

@Gwendolen World Bird Wednesday is great! You need to come and pot with us!

@Amila they are great o have round, always making happy little vocalizations

@John thank you very much!

@Hilke the Oak Titmouse lives primarily in California with some spreading to southern Oregon and northern Baja Mexico.


Modesto Viegas (Portugal) May 18, 2011 at 5:21 am

Very good series!


springman May 18, 2011 at 5:27 am

Great post Larry! I too love titmice and didn’t know about the Oak version you so beautifully describe. It’s amazing how quickly these little creatures develop. If my maths right the time from hatching to independent bird…one month!


Pat May 18, 2011 at 6:02 am

Great photos and info here! I’m not familiar with the Oak Titmouse, so well-presented in your photos and video.


Jean May 18, 2011 at 6:16 am

A very informative post about this cousin to the Tufted Titmice. I really enjoyed the top notch photos and video.


holdingmoments May 18, 2011 at 7:03 am

A lovely little bird, and very alert.
Great to have them nesting, and be able to watch them. Loved the video.


Pam May 18, 2011 at 7:33 am

Those are such wonderful captures! I think someone was posing for the camera. LOL


Fotokarusellen May 18, 2011 at 9:38 am

Beautiful images and a very beautiful little fellow. Great captures.


theconstantwalker May 18, 2011 at 10:14 am

A lovely little bird to see.
Many thanks for sharing.


Boom & Gary May 18, 2011 at 10:56 am

Great essay and photos!! Boom & Gary of the Vermilon River, Canada.


Mick May 18, 2011 at 1:07 pm

Larry, the detail in your photos is amazing!


Kim,USA May 18, 2011 at 1:17 pm

Wow you spotted several beautiful birds. Love all of them!! Thanks for the visit and the comment too.



Nancy May 18, 2011 at 3:32 pm

Such a spritely little bird — I would think I should see them in Nebraska, but I have not yet. Your photos are wonderful. 🙂


Indrani May 19, 2011 at 12:20 am

Very cute captures, lucky you! 🙂


Barbara Pritchard May 19, 2011 at 3:01 pm

Love your Oak Titmouse images. I have them in my garden here in Mill Valley. However, when I checked out your store, I noticed you carry traps for squirrels and raccoons. You do know that wild animals in the State of California cannot be relocated. They are protected from this by State Law. And common sense, relocating wild animals is cruel. Traps in the hands of amateurs bring sadness and grief to all sides. Please remove theses items from your site.


Larry May 21, 2011 at 6:58 am

@Barbara thank you for bringing this to my attention! I didn’t realize that those traps were available at my store and I have removed them.

I encourage everyone to visit Barbara’s website on Wildlife Solutions. She has a page telling us why traps don’t work.


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