Mountain chickadee is also known as a cheeseburger, is commonly found at high elevations above 12,000 feet. It is more like the other types of chickadees. but its white stripe on the upper side of the eye makes it different from the rest of the types.
What will I learn?
- 1 5 Cool Facts About Mountain Chickadee
- 2 Where Do Mountain Chickadee Live?
- 3 What Do Mountain Chickadees Eat?
- 4 Attract Mountain Chickadees to Backyard
- 5 Nesting Facts of Mountain Chickadee
- 6 Behavior of Mountain Chickadee – Active
- 7 Mountain Chickadee Call
- 8 Conservation of Mountain Chickadee
- 9 Conclusion:
A beautiful small-sized bird of grayish color with a big blackhead. It has a tiny, but sharp bill with a black throat and cap. A white forehead, black bib, and brownish upper part. The color of the small-sized breast and belly is dull white, also, flanks with puff color.
|Scientific Name||Poecile gambeli|
|Size||Length: 5.3 inches|
Mountain chickadee love to stay on high elevations full of dry and coniferous forests. These are energetic and acrobatic birds. They usually move in flocks with other birds like kinglets and nuthatches. After breeding season, they spent most time finding seeds for winter. They also spend their time with chestnut-backed and black-capped chickadees in the non-breeding season.
5 Cool Facts About Mountain Chickadee
Following are some cool facts about mountain chickadee.
- Study shows that 10 calories per day are sufficient amount of food for chickadees to survive.
- When they find a good supply of seeds, they just start storing them for later.
- In Arizona, during the lodgepole needle miner outbreak, there was one chickadee with 275 tiny caterpillars in its stomach.
- The incubation period of this species is one week longer than the black-capped chickadee.
- The recorded age of the oldest mountain chickadee was 10 years and 1 month old.
|Length||4.3 to 5.5 in (11 to 14 cm)|
|Weight||0.4 oz (11 g)|
|Wingspan||7.5 in (19 cm)|
|Wing||2.2 to 2.4 in|
|Tail||2.1 to 2.3 in|
|Culmen||0.25 to 0.31 in|
|Tarsus||0.41 to 0.45 in|
Where Do Mountain Chickadee Live?
These birds widely spread in evergreen forests of the western mountains of the United States. They usually prefer spruce-fir, pine, and mixed conifer forests. They leave deciduous areas for the black-capped chickadee.
In summer, they can be found in high elevations. In winter, they tend to move to the stands at the river bottom.
What Do Mountain Chickadees Eat?
In warm months, mountain chickadee loves to eat insects full of protein and spiders. Also, they eat sunflower seeds and nuts as available. They visit bird feeders throughout the year.
Fly larvae, beetles, caterpillars, and leafhoppers also part of their diet. These birds eat seeds of montane pine in winter and fall.
Mountain chickadee spends all daylight hours feeding. 70% of their diet consists of insects and 30% coming from the plant.
Attract Mountain Chickadees to Backyard
Mountain chickadees visit bird feeder eagerly. They love to eat black oil sunflower seeds.
In winter, especially fill your bird feeder with suet and peanut to attract this bird. Make sure your bird feeders or nest boxes are 30 feet above the ground. Attach a guard to keep predators are away from the nests to secure the eggs and small birds.
Make sure to put your nest boxes before the breeding season. It will help to attract more breeding pairs to your backyard. So, you can enjoy the beautiful song by chickadees.
Nesting Facts of Mountain Chickadee
Mountain chickadees usually build their nest in cavities. If the wood is hard, then it is very difficult for them to excavate. They use the nest already built by other birds like woodpeckers and nuthatches. They occasionally build their nests in natural crevices.
Females make cup shapes inside the nest by gather fur and feathers. She also makes a cup to cover the eggs in her absence. They normally produce 1 to 2 broods per year. The incubation period of this bird is 14 days.
|Clutch Size||5 – 9 eggs|
|Number of Broods||1 – 2 Broods|
|Egg Length||1.6 cm (0.6 in)|
|Egg Width||1.2 cm (0.5 in)|
|Incubation Period||12 – 15 days|
|Nesting Period||17 – 23 days|
Behavior of Mountain Chickadee – Active
This species is active, agile, and fit. They are very quick in finding insects and seeds. In summer, these birds make groups of three pairs of adults and some young birds. They mostly fly inside their own territory and join other flocks.
In winter, they join a group of adults and start the search for a nesting location. Mountain chickadee enjoys sunbath in sunny mornings during cold weather. This type of chickadee is braver than the other types of chickadee.
Mountain Chickadee Call
There is a variety of buzzes and chips in the call of mountain chickadee such as chick-dzee-dzee-dzee. Typically, their song is consisting of a 3 to 4 note descending whistle like fee-bee-bay. Its more vocal variations are similar to black-capped chickadee.
Conservation of Mountain Chickadee
The population of mountain chickadee declined by 1.5% every year from 1966 to 2014.
According to the North American Breeding Bird Survey, the destruction of standing deadwood resulting in a cumulative loss of 53%. The total population of this bird is 7.5 million. 80% of their population lives in the United States and 19% lives in Canada.
So, we have discussed the quickest type of chickadee. These facts and figures may enhance your knowledge about this type of chickadee. Kindly tell us, the best thing you like about the boreal chickadee.