Image by brendan.lally....away via FlickrOh boy, the tree outside the Wild Birds Unlimited - East Lansing store is hopping with Golden-crowned Kinglets! A week ago the same tree was filled with dancing Ruby-crowned Kinglets and now the Golden-crowned! Both birds are close in size; just a half inch bigger than a Ruby-throated Hummingbird.
These teeny, tiny birds are hop, hop, hopping around and poking their needle thin bills around the branches to glean bugs. There are a couple chickadees in the flock that look enormous compared to the 3½-4 inch golden-crowns. In the winter it’s common to see the chickadees, Red-breasted Nuthatches, and Brown Creepers together in flocks.
Image by gnevets88 via FlickrThe Golden-crowned Kinglet (Regulus satrapa) has a song that begins with three or four high-pitched “tsee-tsee-tsee” notes, followed by a rapid trill. I’m looking them up in my Birds of Michigan field guide and it says the mnemonic device to remember the song is “tsee-tsee-tsee-tsee, why do you shilly-shally?”