Black-capped Chickadee  ( Mésange à tête noire )

Back to Checklist

Poecile atricapillus

Photo Description:    Chickadee
Photo Date:   October 28, 2007

Photo Location:  

Henwood Township

Photographer:  

Michael Werner

General Notes

This vibrant little ball of fluff is abundant enough throughout the area to be familiar to even the most casual observer of birds.  They are a regular and reliable feeder visitor throughout the year.  Energetic, inquisitive and gregarious, they are always a welcome guest.

Though always somewhat of a generalist in their usage of habitat, in summer they are more of a forest dweller. Their chief summer diet is insects.  The nest is excavated in a rotting stump, often of poplar, though sometimes an old woodpecker hole is adopted.

Don't be too quick to dismiss small flocks of these little sprites when you see them along the trail, as their bright calls often attract other small songbirds.  Especially in the fall, they are often accompanied by vireos, warblers, nuthatches, kinglets, small woodpeckers, and sometimes even a Brown Creeper or Boreal Chickadee.

The latin name of the Black-capped Chickadee was changed in 1998 to recognize the differences between the Old World tits and the New World chickadees.  The Old World species retained the genus Parus, while our chickadees were put into the new genus Poecile.

Their population has been increasing significantly, the North American population having grown by 80% in the last 40 years.

Abundance: Abundant
Breeding Status: Resident

 

Banding Results

Year

Gillies
Lake

Hilliardton
Marsh

Mountain
Chutes

Year
Total

1990 44     44
1991 25     25
1992 23     23
1993 34     34
1994 7     7
1995 110     110
1996 36 1   37
1997 55 2   57
1998 23 8 69 100
1999 51 215 81 347
2000 84 91 58 233
2001 38 74 110 222
2002 14 29 72 115
2003 38 92 20 150
2004 56 88 69 213
2005 36 193 61 290
2006 33 56 41 130
2007   160   160
2008        
2009