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BTO Blueline
BLUE TIT
Parus caeruleus
Blue Tit © George H Higginbotham
Conservation listings

Europe: SPEC category 4, secure
UK: Green

Long-term trend
UK, England: shallow increase
Status summary
Blue Tit populations have increased in abundance, in parallel with those of Great Tits, with brief pauses in the long-term upward trend. The recent years of the CBC/BBS index show fluctuations but no clear trend. Food provision by humans during winter and availability of nest boxes, which may reduce egg and nestling predation, have both increased and may have contributed to the rise in population. A substantial decline in productivity, revealed by the CES, has accompanied the population increase.
 
CBC/BBS UK graph
 
Table of population changes for Blue Tit
Source Period
(yrs)
Years Plots
(n)
Change
(%)
Lower
limit
Upper
limit
Alert Comment
CBC/BBS UK 33 1967-2000 558 27 16 40    
  25 1975-2000 673 7 -2 16    
  10 1990-2000 1276 1 -2 5    
  5 1995-2000 1958 -1 -3 2    
CBC/BBS England 33 1967-2000 466 28 14 45    
  25 1975-2000 561 6 -1 19    
  10 1990-2000 1056 0 -3 5    
  5 1995-2000 1611 -1 -3 2    
CES adults 17 1984-2001 94 2 . .    
  10 1991-2001 109 6 . .    
  5 1996-2001 111 -6 . .    
CES juveniles 17 1984-2001 93 -24 . .    
  10 1991-2001 108 -12 . .    
  5 1996-2001 111 -10 . .    
BBS UK 8 1994-2002 1681 9 5 13    
BBS England 8 1994-2002 1374 5 1 9    
BBS Scotland 8 1994-2002 117 11 -7 33    
BBS Wales 8 1994-2002 135 28 13 46    
BBS N.Ireland 8 1994-2002 47 49 8 104    
BBS acknowledgement
 
CBC/BBS England graph
CES adult abundance graph
CES juvenile abundance graph
BBS UK graph
BBS England graph
BBS Scotland graph
BBS Wales graph
BBS N Ireland graph
 
Table of productivity information for Blue Tit
Variable Period
(yrs)
Years Mean
annual
sample
Trend Predicted
in first year
Predicted
in last year
Change Comment
Clutch size 33 1968-2001 84 None        
Brood size 33 1968-2001 135 Linear decline 8.29 chicks 7.55 chicks -0.74 chicks  
Daily failure rate (eggs) 33 1968-2001 136 Linear decline 0.0052 nests/day 0.0023 nests/day -0.0029 nests/day  
Daily failure rate (chicks) 33 1968-2001 116 None        
Laying date 33 1968-2001 118 Linear decline day 123 day 118 -5 days  
Percentage juveniles (CES) 17 1984-2001 98 Smoothed trend 140 productivity index 101 productivity index -29%[>25*]  
Percentage juveniles (CES) 10 1991-2001 114 Smoothed trend 117 productivity index 101 productivity index -15%  
Percentage juveniles (CES) 5 1996-2001 116 Smoothed trend 101 productivity index 101 productivity index -1%  
 
Clutch size graph
Brood size graph
Egg nest failure graph
Chick nest failure graph
Laying date graph
CES productivity graph
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This report should be cited as:
Crick, H.Q.P., Marchant, J.H., Noble, D.G., Baillie, S.R., Balmer, D.E., Beaven, L.P., Coombes, R.H.,
Downie, I.S., Freeman, S.N., Joys, A.C., Leech, D.I., Raven, M.J., Robinson, R.A. and Thewlis, R.M. (2004)
Breeding Birds in the Wider Countryside: their conservation status 2003.
BTO Research Report No. 353. BTO, Thetford. (http://www.bto.org/birdtrends2003)

Pages maintained by Susan Waghorn and Iain Downie: Last updated 16 February, 2009