(1. Parus, Leach).

Head, throat, lower part of the neck, and mesial line of the abdomen, black; cheeks, and a spot on the nape, white.

P. major, Temm. Man. d'Orn. torn. 1. p. 287. Great Titmouse, Mont. Orn. Diet. Selb. Illust. vol. 1. p. 233. pl 51. f. 1. Bew. Brit. Birds, vol. 1. p. 272.

Dimensions

Entire length five inches eleven lines: length of the bill (from the forehead) five lines and a half, (from the gape) seven lines; of the tarsus nine lines and a half; of the tail two inches nine lines; from the carpus to the end of the wing three inches one line; breadth, wings extended, nine inches three lines.

Description

Head, throat, fore part of the neck, and a longitudinal streak down the middle of the abdomen, black: cheeks and ear-coverts, and a spot on the nape, white: back olive-green: rump bluish ash: breast and belly, on each side of the black line, yellow: quills dusky; wing-coverts bluish ash, the larger tipped with white: tail dusky ash; the outer feather with the exterior web white; the next tipped with white: under tail-coverts white: bill black: legs lead-colour. In the female, the colours are not so vivid, and the abdominal black streak does not extend so low down. (Egg). White, spotted and speckled with pale red: long. diam. nine lines and a half; trans, diam. seven lines.

Common in woods and gardens throughout the country. Has a great variety of notes, which are heard very early in the year. Feeds principally on insects, but will also devour grain, as well as flesh. Breeds in the hollows of decayed trees, or in old walls. Nest constructed chiefly of moss, and lined with feathers. Eggs very numerous.