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Incredible Journey

From Norfolk to the Baltic ? one Great Tit`s epic journey!

The British Trust for Ornithology has just heard of a rather incredible movement. We in the UK are all familiar with Great Tits, the colourful visitors to garden peanut feeders. Well there`s more to them than meets the eye! Since the 1960`s, Great Tits have been slowly getting bolder and bolder, moving further and further from home.It is very rare for a Great Tit to travel over 100km, but the BTO has been receiving an increasing number of reports of such long-distance journeys. The most recent movement was of a young female bird ringed in January 2004 near Fakenham, Norfolk, by a team led by Keith Herber. Who knows where this bird went to in the meantime, but in September it was re-caught by a group called Ornitologine Stotis in Lithuania near the Baltic! This is a staggering 1,359km from Fakenham! Great Tits really aren`t built for migration, but this bird broke all the rules!This is only the third time a ringed Great Tit has ventured so far east. The first occasion was in 1977 when a female bird from Essex was caught by ringers in Lithuania. Since then, another female originally ringed in Kalingrad, Russia in September 1999 was caught by ringers in Cleveland in February 2000. Is it something about females ??

For further information please contact: Mark Grantham on 01842 750050 or e-mail: mark.grantham@bto.org during office hours

4th July 2014