Photography of Birds – Set # 275
Set # 275
The nuthatches are a genus, Sitta, of small passerine birds which derive their English name from the propensity of some species to wedge large insects or seeds into cracks, and then hack at them with their strong bills. Sitta is derived from sittē, the Ancient Greek for nuthatch, and carolinensis means “of Carolina” in Latin. The White-breasted Nuthatch was first described by English ornithologist John Latham in his 1790 work, the Index Ornithologicus.
The Brown-headed Nuthatch is regularly observed using a small chips of bark, small twigs, and pine needles held in its beak as tools to dig for insects. The nuthatch exhibits other curious behaviors such a cooperative groups where groups of 3-5 adults provide care at a single nest. Recent genetic assessments suggest some of the putatively non-breeding adults associated with these groups may actually breed with individuals in neighboring territories. This nuthatch also exhibits a wide range of other social behaviors that include social grooming and male-female duets similar to those observed for the Pygmy Nuthatch.
© HJ Ruiz – Avian101