Brownbreasted nuthatch

Sitta pusilla

CONSERVATION STATUS

Not threatened. A widespread and abundant species.

SIGNIFICANCE TO HUMANS None known. ♦

SUBFAMILY

Sittinae

TAXONOMY

Sitta pusilla Latham, 1790.

OTHER COMMON NAMES

French: Sittelle à tête brune; German: Braunkopfkleiber; Spanish: Sita de Cabeza Castaña.

PHYSICAL CHARACTERISTICS

3.5 in (9 cm), with a short tail. The back is colored blue-gray, the crown brown, and the undersides and throat are white washed with brown.

DISTRIBUTION

Occurs widely in the southeastern United States.

HABITAT

Occurs in mature, pine-dominated forest types. BEHAVIOR

Occurs as pairs that defend a breeding territory. Does not migrate. Occurs in mixed-species flocks with chickadees and warblers during the nonbreeding season. The song is a series of soft twitterings.

FEEDING ECOLOGY AND DIET

Gleans invertebrates from tree bark and foliage, especially on branches. Also eats fruits and seeds in winter.

REPRODUCTIVE BIOLOGY

Pairs nest in a tree cavity. The female incubates the eggs but both sexes feed the young.

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