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Long-tailed tit

Last updated: 07 February 2011

Long tailed-tits are some of the best nest builders in Wales with some nests containing up to 2,000 feather inside.

In this clip from Iolo's Secret Life of Birds(December 2010 on BBC One Wales), Iolo Williams studies a nest being built in woods at Newtown near Powys.

Long tailed-tits will hide their nests well in amongst thorns and thick bushes and will add more feathers depending on how exposed it will be. The more exposed it is - the more feathers they will add.

The females also weave in spider webs to accommodate the growing chicks inside, so the nest actually expands as the birds grow!

This mouse-like bird is one of the most pleasing visual treats in the garden. Their black, white and pink plumage marks them out against their better-known cousins - the blue and great tits but the big give away is their exceptionally long tail.

They will often move in large groups, whipping through gardens in their search for seeds and insects and you'll often find 6 or more on your garden feeders at once but be warned - they are not easy to photograph and are easily spooked.

Aside from gardens, they can be seen in woodland, hedgerows, scrub and parkland.

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