Goldcrest Bird is the tiniest bird, weighing as little as 5g! Goldcrest Bird is dumpy and rotund, with a large head, a thin blackish bill and a beady black pale-ringed eye, set in an otherwise plain face. It is pale green on the upperparts with a bold wing pattern of a broad whitish bar on the tips of the greater coverts and primary coverts, contrasting with a black bar on the base of the secondaries. The crown is yellow in the centre, mixed with flame-orange in the male, and bordered on each side by black lines.
Goldcrest Bird is resident in our region, with northern breeders migrating south in winter and supplementing local populations. In the breeding season it favours mixed and coniferous woodland, often keeping high in the branches. At other times it ranges more widely, and can be found in deciduous woodland and bushy areas, parks and gardens, particularly where conifers are present. It often joins feeding flocks of tits, and in autumn immigrants arrive in variable numbers, when they can be found in coastal scrub before they disperse inland.
The calls and song of Goldcrest Bird are very high-pitched, between 7-8kHz, and sadly for older birders they are one of the first common bird sounds lost when hearing begins to deteriorate. The common call is a thin, 3-4-note "sszi-sszi-sszi-sszi", often used as a contact call, and also a rather more shrill and stronger-sounding "zzit-zzit-zzit", also given singly and occasionally sounding a little rough and hoarse. It also gives random little high-pitched "zze" sounds when feeding. The song is a rapid shuttling high-pitched sequence, the main phrase repeated with a cyclical quality and finished off with a variable lower-pitched trilling flourish, such as "ti' wii' titoo-wii' titoo-wii' titoo-wii' titoo zee' ti' t' trrrrreo".