The Black-capped Chickadee is a nonmigratory, northern resistant passerine, with many survival techniques to endure the northern climates. They are known to lower their body temperatures by up to 12 degrees celsius during the cold winter nights by fluffing their feathers and keeping heat near the body. This method allows the chickadee to stay well insulated in sub zero temperatures. This ability enables the Black-capped to reside in the northern climates year round with the energy to continue feeding throughout the year. Having a great spatial memory, this bird is well known to cache food for weeks, in multiple random places, to feed on later. These two practices alone make this bird a long term northern survivor.
This chickadee is found throughout the northern states and across Canada extending northwards into parts of the Yukon and Northwest Territories. It lives in all types of forest in very healthy numbers and is a very common resident in urban places. While building its nest inside tree hollows, this small bird typically lays 6-8 white; spotted with reddish brown eggs and incubates them for 13 days. Just a few short weeks after hatching, the chicks fledge.
The Black-capped Chickadee is a very social bird and travels with members of the same species, along with other individuals, creating mixed flocks. It is very common for people to hand feed this bird in places where they are accustomed to human presence. This makes the chickadee a great bird to practice bird photography with and to become familiar with the other common birds usually travelling with the black-cap. This photo was taken on the Confederation Trail in Cardigan, PEI, Canada where they live in very high numbers.
Explore, Learn and Conserve Wildlife
Robbie P. Gallant
As a naturalist, I spend a great amount of time in personal study. Discussion and research is key to exploring new and intelligent ideas and furthering our understanding of our natural surroundings.