Look at the bird’s size and shape.,
Take in the general color pattern.,
Notice the eyes.,
Watch for foraging.,
Listen to the songs.,
Watch your bird feeders.,
Identify the boreal chickadee.,
Recognize the chestnut-backed chickadee.,
Look for the mountain chickadee.,
Identify the Carolina chickadee.,
Recognize the black-capped chickadee.
The chickadee is a very small bird. Larger birds are unlikely to be chickadees. It also has a specific body type to look for.The chickadee has a sphere-like appearance due to its short neck and large head.
A chickadee also has a short, thick bill and a long and narrow tail.;
, In general, chickadees will have black heads, or caps, with white cheeks. The back feathers will be some shade of gray. The wing feathers will also be gray, but with white edges., A chickadee’s cap descends well below its eyes. It can be very difficult to see a chickadee’s eyes, as they are often very small and obscured by the cap. If you can easily see an animal’s eyes, it may not be a chickadee., Chickadees often forage for food. If you catch a bird foraging, it may be a chickadee. Chickadees often hop between twigs and grab food off the ground. They also may hang upside down on branches to grab food., Chickadees sing, like most birds. There are a variety of songs chickadees sing.Chickadees often sing “chick-a-dee-dee-dee” in a low, slow voice.
They may also whistle a two-noted “fee-bee” or three noted “fee-bee-ee.”
, Chickadees are very social birds. They’re likely to gather around bird feeders. If you see a bird near a feeder, it’s likely it could be a chickadee. Watch for other signs of a chickadee, such as its appearance, to confirm., The boreal chickadee is generally found in very northern parts of the United States and Canada. If you don’t live in very northern Michigan, Washington, Idaho, or Montana, you’re unlikely to see this chickadee in the United States.The boreal chickadee has a dark pinkish brown cap that fades to gray. The cheeks are white and then also fade to gray behind the eye.
The underparts of the bird are generally olive gray, while flight and tail feathers are dark gray. Tail feathers have white fringes.
, Chestnut-backed chickadees are generally found in the Pacific Northwest. They have a white face and a dark brown crown. The underparts of the bird are dotted in a chestnut color, hence the name.The chestnut on the underparts of the bird are noticeable because they contrast greatly with the dark gray tail and flight feathers.
The flanks of the bird are a chestnut color, contrasting with the white belly.
, Mountain chickadees are generally found in the mountains or places with high elevations. They’re unlikely to be found anywhere with an elevation below 3,000 feet (910 m).The mountain chickadee has a sooty black cap and also sooty black patches around the eyes.
Underparts of the bird are grayish brown. The flight and tail feathers are a slightly darker gray.
, The Carolina chickadee exists mostly in the Southern parts of the United States, usually in the woods or along the edges of streams. It has a sooty black cap, that extends towards the lower back, as well as white cheeks.The bird also has a black bib.
The upper parts of the bird are olive gray with darker tail feathers.
, The black-capped chickadee is the most common type, found in most part of the United States outside of the south. They are found in a great number of habitats.The bird has, as the name implies, a sooty black cap that extends down the back.
The underparts of the bird are olive gray.
The tail feathers are slightly darker with fringes of white on the edges.