About us: We own the Wild Birds Unlimited nature shop in East Lansing, Michigan,
a store that provides a wide variety of supplies to help you enjoy the birdwatching hobby.

This blog was created to answer frequently asked questions & to share nature stories and photographs.
To contribute, email me at bloubird@gmail.com.

Tuesday, June 12, 2018

How to tell if it is a baby chickadee

This week I’ve had a few families of chickadees (momma, poppa and kids) visit the feeders at the Wild Birds Unlimited store and at home. Sometimes it is hard to distinguish between the male, female, and juvenile chickadees. I did notice the parents were looking a little haggard while their kids were bouncy bundles of fluff. Fresh faced birds are usually the babies and another sign of juveniles is their squeaky baby call.

Before I saw the chickadee families, I heard the persistent begging calls of the fledglings. It was similar to the adult Chick-a-dee-dee-dee call but not as pronounced and higher in pitch. Their many songs and calls are learned over time from their parents. In the first 4 to 5 weeks, baby black-capped chickadees’ produce a variety of different notes and syllables that develop gradually into typical, well developed, black-capped chickadee vocalizations.

The beginning of June is usually when you will see the results of chickadees’ first nesting. They will take the young out and about farther and farther from the nest site to teach them the basics in survival. This family vacation or training period lasts for about 3 to 4 weeks and then the tight cohesive unit will disperse. The young take off suddenly in different directions to settle away from their natal territory and hook up with other young birds new to the area. Once settled in their new territory, most will remain in the same general area for the rest of their adult lives. Meanwhile the parents return to begin a second nesting.

Related Articles:

Chickadee song sounds like he has a mouth full of marbles http://marbles.html
What the 'dee' in Chick-a-dee means http://goo.gl/8rde3a
A closer look at the fee-bee song of the chickadee http://goo.gl/X4qLRV
Why don't chickadees stay to eat at the feeder? http://bit.ly/AkKThH
After chickadee babies have fledged http://bit.ly/yAYbP4
Fun Facts About Chickadees http://bit.ly/zIDkCi

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