Posted by: chartroose | May 6, 2008

My Little Chickadees

This post has absolutely nothing to do with books in any way, but I don’t care.  These little critters are just too cute to ignore, and I’ve been seeing tons of them while going on my afternoon walkies.  I did some reading on chickadees this morning and found out that they’re really good for the environment too!  They can help increase the growth of evergreen forests by as much as one-third.  Here’s a synopsis of a  CU Boulder study which was undertaken a year or two ago:

The study showed that chicadees and nuthatches removed various species of beetles, caterpillars, ants and aphids from tree branches, increasing the vigor of the trees, said study author Kailen Mooney.  Mooney, who conducted the study as part of his doctoral research in CU-Boulder’s ecology and evolutionary biology department, said it is the first study to demonstrate that birds can affect the growth of conifers.

“In a nutshell, the study shows that the presence of these birds in pine forests increased the growth of the trees by helping to rid them of damaging insects,” said Mooney.  “From the standpoint of the trees, it appears that the old adage, ‘the enemy of my enemy is my friend,’ holds true.”***

This is pretty cool, huh?  So, without further ado, I bring you my little chickadees.  I love these little guys!

***Kailen Mooney
University of Colorado at Boulder



  1. They are adorable! We live on the edge of a protected wetland and get all kind of cool birds, including these little guys. I love them! And I saw my first pileated woodpecker last summer. They look like prehistoric birds!

    Great pics!

  2. Thank you Lezlie! I’m going to go look up pictures of pileated woodpeckers now, and then I’ll head over to check out your site.

  3. They are so cute! And the pictures are fantastic. Thanks for sharing!

  4. What wondeful pictures! I love chickadees …

  5. They’re adorable!! Did you take those shots? They’re awesome as well. 😀

  6. Our chickadees in Switzerland have lots of blue coloring – they’re gorgeous and are the birds I most see out on my walks. Thanks for the photos!

  7. So sweeeeeeet! tweet tweet

  8. Thanks everyone!

    These are Colorado chicadees, which is why they’re black and white (because Colorado folks only see things in black and white) ( : I wonder if Northern and Southern chicadees are different. I’d love to see Verbivore’s blue and white ones!

  9. Our chickadees in Canada (Ottawa – ontario, the east) are a little bit different – instead of the black slashes, it’s all one big black patch on top of the head, so it starts a little higher than the patch on yours does. They are the same size, it looks like. Do yours whistle?
    I love the pictures by the way! And like Lezlie, I live on the edge of a conservation wetland, so we have pileated woodpeckers, as well as finches, orioles (yes, from Baltimore! they are a cool orange!), owls, cardinals, and all kinds of summer visitors. How did you take the pictures, or were they from a website?
    PS my sister in New Brunswick has eagles flying over her house! How cool is that??

  10. Susan — Yeah, they whistle and they do this long and short sound thing too. There’s this really cool website that has all the different chickadee sounds. They’re very social little birds!

    Here’s the site:

    I got the pictures from Google Images. I’m actually a terrible photographer. It would be wonderful to be able to take pictures like this wouldn’t it?

    I have hawks, but no eagles. I’m envious–that would be the neatest thing!

    I’ve been wanting to head to Ottawa for years. Maybe this should be next on my vacation agenda.

  11. Now Dear, I MUST insist that ***IF*** you decide to veer off the book topics and yap about whatever (even adorable little birdies) that you spend some time looking up relevant books to mention!

    What’s wrong with you? What kind of weekly geek ARE you? (and what’s wrong with me for always being so sarcastic!?)

  12. Care — I’m blowing raspberries in your general direction! Nyah, nyah!

  13. The southeastern chickadees are called “black-capped” so I suppose that’s an east-coast thing . . . they’re my favorite birds, so much so that I once tried to carve a pair of them into soapstone – something my father did when I was younger but that I hadn’t thought of until now. So thanks for the reminder.

    And I love these pics . . . Thanks.

  14. Thanks, Andi!
    I hope you recheck this because I want to find out about your soapstone carvings. Did you finish?

  15. […] Little Critter – Book Barrage […]

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