A sneeze-like ‘pit-chooo!’ will invariably be what draws your attention to a marsh tit, or perhaps a pair, moving through the leafless trees of a December wood. Of all British tits, they are the most closely associated with old deciduous woodland. In winter you might spot one visiting a bird-feeder in a rural garden, but otherwise marsh tits seldom leave extensive forested areas. Unfortunately, the species is becoming scarce: results from the UK’s Breeding Bird Survey show that its population fell 41 per cent from 1995 to 2015.
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