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Silver-throated Tit - BirdForum Opus

Alternative name: Silver-throated Bushtit

Photo by kevin_wan
Plum Hill, Nanjing, China, February 2017
Aegithalos glaucogularis


13–16 cm (5-6¼ in). A tiny, round-bodied bird with a short bill and a long, narrow tail.

  • Buff forehead
  • Glossy black lateral crown stripes, merging on forecrown
  • Pale buff central crown stripe and centre of nape, both with variable blackish streaking
  • Medium to dark grey upperparts with narrow pink band on rump
  • Long, blackish tail, outer feather mostly white on outer web, inner retrices with grey fringes on outer webs
  • Blackish-brown upperwings
  • Pale drab grey lores, cheek and ear-coverts, obscurely streaked
  • Off-wite chin, submoustachial stripe and side of neck
  • Sooty black throat with fine pale grey feather tips
  • Drab grey to buffy grey breast, slightly paler belly and whiter flanks
  • Clean pale pink vent and undertai-coverts
  • Vinaceus with paler sides of head, paler underparts and a longer tail

Sexes similar. Juveniles have vinous-pink chin, throat and breast.


Northern, western and central China.
Widespread and fairly common.


Formerly included in Long-tailed Tit.


Two subspecies are recognised[1]:

  • A. g. glaucogularis: Central China (mountains of western Sichuan to Yangtze delta)
  • A. g. vinaceus: Northern and western China (Liaoning to Gansu, Qinghai and northern Yunnan)


Scrub and forest edge. In the north found in lowlands and mountains up to 3000 m, in the south of the range more restricted to mountains.



Flight is short, whirring bursts and drops. Looks like a bouncing ball of fluff with a tail. Usually in flocks playing follow-my-leader from one patch of cover to another.
Seldom stays still for long, flitting about within a bush, chasing insects.


Breeding season March to April. Woven nests containing spider webs and lichen are built in a tree or shrub.


Diet probably includes insects but there is little information. It is likely a very similar to that of Long-tailed Tit


  1. Clements, J. F., T. S. Schulenberg, M. J. Iliff, D. Roberson, T. A. Fredericks, B. L. Sullivan, and C. L. Wood. 2017. The eBird/Clements checklist of birds of the world: v2017, with updates to August 2017. Downloaded from http://www.birds.cornell.edu/clementschecklist/download/
  2. Del Hoyo, J, A Elliott, and D Christie, eds. 2008. Handbook of the Birds of the World. Volume 13: Penduline-tits to Shrikes. Barcelona: Lynx Edicions. ISBN 978-8496553453
  3. Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive (retrieved Oct 2017)

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