LIFE'S BETTER IN THE MOUNTAINS

Monday, May 11, 2015

Chickadees Nesting


In a previous post, I mentioned the chickadees were checking out one of our pottery bird boxes.  While we have plenty of wooden and gourd houses for living space, the chickadees took a liking to this ceramic one.  We wondered if they would actually use it for nesting.

Yes, they did.  And now the eggs have hatched, keeping the birds very busy.

(You many need to click to enlarge the pictures)


One of parents sits on a branch to the left of the bird house.
There is food for the babies




 The bird goes inside the house, then comes back out with something white in its mouth.
Sort of a white bubble




It is a fecal sac.  Many birds carry these far away from the nest to dump them.
Otherwise the sight and smell of them might attract predators.


Chickadees are year-round residents here.  Is this a Black-capped Chickadee or a Carolina Chickadee?  Usually one can easily tell by the location.  Black-capped Chickadees live in the north and Carolina Chickadees in the south.  However, we are in a small geographic area that both Black-capped Chickadees and Carolina Chickadees inhabit.  So which is this?  I have no idea.  The differences are very subtle and one needs the two birds side-by-side to truly determine which it is.  Add to that the fact that there is some cross-breeding and you have a real dilemma.

So it doesn't really matter what kind of chickadees we have, we love them.  They are among the most friendly and curious birds, almost always the first to try out a new feeder.  They don't seem to mind if we sit on the deck to watch them and they provide us with endless joy year-round.



13 comments:

Cheryl said...

Oh I love the little house with birds in residence....how lovely.

I enlarged, they are super shots.......

Barbara Rogers said...

I never knew I might be looking at 2 varieties of Chickadees...and probably would just enjoy them no matter what their ancestry! I like the way they sing Chck-a-dee-dee-dee.

robin andrea said...

How wonderful to watch these chickadees. Soon you will see the babies fledge. It's amazing how quickly it all happens in a bird's life.

Arkansas Patti said...

They really picked a cute house to raise the younguns. You certainly have adorable and tidy tenants.

Ms. A said...

Excellent! Looks like they chose the right real estate, for sure! Adorable house!

Carolina Linthead said...

Cute, cute, cute!!! Reminds me of our friend down on Chickadee...

The Bug said...

I love that house! Those chickadees obviously have good taste :)

Vicki Lane said...

Wonderful pictures! And I love the little house!

Mary Lee said...

That little house is so darned cute--I'd have chosen it, too. ! We have chickadees in one of our bluebird houses. So we're supposed to clean out the houses after the babies fledge?

Ginnie said...

What sweet pictures. I'm surprised that the ceramic bird house seems fine with them. I've always thought they were just for show.
I live South and East of you but I do get the Carolina Chickadees and they are much smaller than what I remember from up North. But, as you say, the cross breeding makes if iffy.

troutbirder said...

What fun to be able to watch this whole process...:)

Tara Crowley said...

Great shots -- lucky you!

NCmountainwoman said...

Thanks for your comments, everyone. We do enjoy watching our birds, especially the chickadees.

Mary Lee - Yes, it's always advisable to clean the nest box after the babies fledge and leave. But I suspect that in many cases, the boxes are not cleaned until fall and the birds seem to do all right.