Thursday, May 24, 2012

A Chickadee At The Feeder

I was fortunate enough to be sitting near the peanut feeder – with camera in hand - when a Chickadee landed on it. These energetic little birds that are universally considered cute are quite difficult to photograph the way they zip around all over the place. But because this one was so determined to get some peanuts, I had enough time to snap a quick round of photos.



Just like squirrels, Chickadees hide food to eat it later. Every peanut, seed or other food bit is placed in a different location, which is easily found when needed since these little birds can remember thousands of hiding places -- for up to a month!



Black-capped Chickadees are easily attracted to feeders but they don’t stick around them for very long. They usually grab some food to eat it elsewhere.



Chickadees live in flocks, and they often associate with woodpeckers, nuthatches, warblers, vireos, and other small woodland species.



Like Downy Woodpeckers, Chickadees practice “nocturnal hypothermia,” which means they lower their body temperature on cold nights.


Chickadees establish a dominance hierarchy, or "pecking order." Each bird is known to the other according to rank which is set by its degree of aggressiveness. The most aggressive bird dominates the rest and all the others fall into a decreasing pecking order. Dominant birds have an advantage in feeding, roosting, nesting and other activities.


Because their diet consists primarily of insects, Chickadees are one of the most valuable contributors toward pest control because their diet consists primarily of insects.

But they don’t mind coming by for a peanut or two when it’s offered.


"Got it!"

8 comments:

  1. Chicka..dee-dee-dee-dee! That is what their scolding sounds like, certainly!
    Lovely little bird, I love them so!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. They are so adorable. Even the sounds they make are sweet.

      Delete
  2. Oh for heaven's sake, I didn't know that much about Chickadees. I never knew they took their food and hid it all over. I'd seen them fly off and eat some elsewhere, but not hiding it. How cool. And that they had a pecking order. I love chickadees. Mom's lucky. She has a chickadee family roosting right outside her house near her clematis. First time that's ever happened. :D

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It must be fun having those chickadees so close, and watching them zip in and out all day long.

      Delete
  3. That is so charming! I love the ending. My late father used to feed them out of his hand and consequently I've always loved them.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. They are not easily frightened, and can learn to take food from your hand. I'd love to do this, but like the chickadees, I have trouble standing still for long. I'm always zipping around the garden!

      Delete
  4. Great pics! I love chickadees - they are definitely part of the soundtrack of summer :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Absolutely. They come to my garden when the peanut feeder is full; that's a favourite treat for them.

      Delete