rik-rat corn pile

Thursday, February 25, 2010

TUFTED TITMOUSE...worst bird name EVER!

1. backyard birdMy nerd book came in the mail yesterday, its a Peterson Field Guide to the Birds of North America. Its a pretty fuckin cool book, I like Peterson's field guides because they're illustrated and show the field marks on each creature well. What's a field mark? Easy, on a robin it would be its red breast...on a bald eagle it would be its white head and tail, not to mention its overall massiveness. Field marks are just little things to notice so you can identify a species with some accuracy. But with certain birds, especially song birds, the field marks are harder to notice.

In my book there are five varieties of titmice (laughing in my head). The field mark they all share is a tiny crest on their tiny little head. And big, dark eyes. However, they're all a wee bit different from one another. Most titmice live out west. In Iowa we have the Tufted Titmouse (still laughing in my head). Whenever I see one of these little guys in my lawn I'm kind of surprised by them, they're funny. This is how they're described in the book.

(this describes the field marks) A small, grey, mouse colored bird with a tufted crest. Forehead and underparts pale, sides rusty. Their song is a whisled "peter peter peter peter (laughing in head) or Here Here Here." Their sound is similar to a chickadee but more nasaly, wheezy and complaing.

Nasaly, wheezy, and complaining? If I was a titmouse I'd be offended. I know I make fun of the word titmouse a lot but when it comes down to it, what a great title for a tiny, discreet, bird. Titmice.


  1. i like it. And blue footed booby, too. And of course naked mole rat.

  2. there's some fish with terrible names as well.

    Hogchoker, its a flounder. Actually, that's a pretty cool name for an animal.

    Hogchoker...i named my hamster that coz I thought it was so ridiculous.

  3. huh. My kids named their hamsters Ratface and SparkMonkey. But Hogchoker is right up there.

  4. your kids win the name prize. Ratface is the best name I think I've ever heard.