|Copyright: Damian Stepien (Kasek)
|Date Taken: 2012-02-29|
|Camera: panasonic DMC FZ30|
|Exposure: f/3.7, 1/500 seconds|
|More Photo Info: [view]|
|Photo Version: Original Version|
|Date Submitted: 2012-03-01 11:23|
|[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note|
In last few weeks I was trying to take photo of Blue Tit, this small bird love to jump from one tree to another, so it was hard to catch it and manage to take great picture. I took hundreds of photos, but this one is my favourite. I know there's branch covering part of the main object, but I love it's position, like it's waiting for me to take two steps forward and attack me then! ;) Hope you like it.
The Blue Tit (Cyanistes caeruleus or Parus caeruleus) is a small passerine bird in the tit family Paridae. The bird is easily recognisable by its blue and yellow plumage.
Blue tits, usually resident and non-migratory birds, are widespread and a common resident breeder throughout temperate and subarctic Europe and western Asia in deciduous or mixed woodlands with a high proportion of oak. They usually nest in tree holes, although they easily adapt to nest boxes where necessary. The main rival for nests and search for food is the much larger Great Tit.
The blue tit prefers insects and spiders for their diet. Outside the breeding season, they also eat seeds and other vegetable-based foods. Blue tits are famed for their skill, as they can cling to the outermost branches and hang upside down when looking for food.
This species was first described by Linnaeus in his Systema naturae in 1758 as Parus caeruleus.
Most authorities retain Cyanistes as a subgenus of Parus, but the British Ornithologists' Union treats Cyanistes as a distinct genus. This is supported by mtDNA cytochrome b sequence analysis which suggests that Cyanistes is not only distinct, but not close to other tits .
The systematics of the Blue Tit complex are disputed. There are currently at least nine recognised subspecies:
C. c. caeruleus (Linnaeus, 1758), the nominate subspecies, occurring in Continental Europe to n Spain, Sicily, n Turkey and n Urals
C. c. obscurus (Pražák, 1894), Ireland, Britain and Channel Islands
C. c. ogilastrae (Hartert, 1905), Portugal, s Spain, Corsica and Sardinia
C. c. balearicus (von Jordans, 1913), Majorca Island (Balearic Islands)
C. c. calamensis (Parrot, 1908), s Greece, Pelopónnisos, Cyclades, Crete and Rhodes
C. c. orientalis (Zarudny & Loudon, 1905), s European Russia (Volga River to central and s Urals)
C. c. satunini (Zarudny, 1908), Crimean Peninsula, Caucasus, Transcaucasia and nw Iran to e Turkey
C. c. raddei (Zarudny, 1908), N Iran
C. c. persicus (Blanford, 1873), Zagros Mountains
An adult Canary Islands Blue Tit on Gran Canaria, Spain. Its crown is black.
The two traditional subspecies found in the Canary Islands (teneriffae) and northwest Africa from northern Morocco to northern Libya (ultramarinus) are distinctive. The Canary Islands subspecies has a black cap, and the African form has a blue back. Research is underway to split these populations into distinct species, with a peculiar "leapfrog" distribution    :
Afrocanarian Blue Tit/Ultramarine Tit, Parus ultramarinus Bonaparte, 1841 (La Palma, Hierro, Fuerteventura, Lanzarote, NW Africa);
Canary Islands Blue Tit, Parus teneriffae Lesson, 1831.(Tenerife, La Gomera, Gran Canaria)
The former would contain three or four subspecies (palmensis, ombriosus and ultramarinus/degener), the latter the nominate P. t. teneriffae and the unnamed distinct form of Gran Canaria.
Pleske's Tit (Cyanistes pleskei) is a common hybrid between this species and the Azure Tit in western Russia. The cap is usually darker than the Azure Tit, and the tail is paler than the Blue Tit.
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