The grey-headed chickadee or Siberian tit (Poecile cinctus, formerly Parus cinctus) is a passerine bird in the tit family Paridae. It is a widespread resident breeder throughout subarctic Scandinavia and northern Asia, and also into North America in Alaska and the far northwest of Canada. It is a conifer specialist. It is resident, and most birds do not migrate. Curiously (with respect to its name), the bird has no grey on its head, which is black, white, and brown.
It is a fairly large tit, 13.5–14 cm long with a weight of 11–14.3 g. The head is dark brown with white cheeks, the mantle brown, the wing feathers blackish with pale fringes, and the underparts whitish with pale brown flanks.
Formerly, it was placed in the genus Parus with most other tits, but mtDNA cytochrome b sequence data and morphology suggest that separating Poecile more adequately expresses these birds' relationships. The American Ornithologists' Union has been treating Poecile as a distinct genus for some time already. The genus name Poecile has often been treated as feminine, giving the species epithet a feminine form in scientific Latin: cincta. However, the genus was not specified as feminine by its original author Johann Jakob Kaup, and under the ICZN it must therefore be treated by default as masculine, giving the masculine form of the species epithet: cinctus.
- BirdLife International (2012). "Parus cinctus". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2013.2. International Union for Conservation of Nature. Retrieved 26 November 2013.
- Poecile cinctus on Avibase
- Gill, F. B., Slikas, B., & Sheldon, F. H. (2005). Phylogeny of titmice (Paridae): II. Species relationships based on sequences of the mitochondrial cytochrome-b gene. Auk 122: 121–143. DOI: 10.1642/0004-8038(2005)122[0121:POTPIS]2.0.CO;2 HTML abstract
- del Hoyo, J., Elliot, A., & Christie D. (eds). (2007). Handbook of the Birds of the World. Volume 12: Picathartes to Tits and Chickadees. Lynx Edicions. ISBN 9788496553422