Those charming chickadees. October 8, 2009Posted by ourfriendben in critters, homesteading, wit and wisdom.
Tags: bird feeders, chickadees, winter birds
Silence Dogood here. I love my home office, filled as it is with plants and books and (usually) cats and our dog Shiloh. But when it comes down to it, the best thing about the office is the view. The front windows look out at our enormous front island bed and shrub border, so I can enjoy the long parade of blooms and watch the songbirds at our feeders and the hummingbirds at the rose-of-Sharon flowers. But the view I love best is from the window directly over my computer.
When I look out this window, I feel like I’m in a Boreal forest—or at least in a tree house. An ancient, absolutely enormous fir tree—so big that its branches are open and the lower ones drape to the ground, and it literally towers over the house—dominates the view. Through its branches, I can see a large holly and several other large (but not that large) evergreens.
The forest feeling is enhanced by the squirrels scampering over the huge fir’s branches and the numerous songbirds flitting in and out. Recently, I’ve noticed that there are more chickadees, one of my all-time favorite birds. In the last couple of years we’ve had Carolina chickadees here as well as our usual black-capped chickadees; we might have had some hybrids as well. I love these bold, dapper little birds with their distinctive call: ”chickadee-dee-dee!!!”* (It’s easy to imitate, too, and the fearless little birds will answer when you call them.)
Chickadees enjoy the black oil sunflower seeds in our tube feeders, but can be seen at our cabin feeder where we set out mixed seed, too. Now that it’s colder, we’ve started filling the cabin feeder (technically called a hopper feeder, but it’s wood and is shaped like a cabin so that’s what we call it) again and have been enjoying watching the birds—and a very fat squirrel—making the most of it. But even one tube feeder of black oil sunflower seeds would be enough to attract chickadees if they’re in your area.
Welcome back, you bold little pioneers! Now we can look forward to the other winter residents following in your wake.
‘Til next time,
* Actually, I’ve read that chickadees’ delightful cousins, the tufted titmice, also sometimes call “chickadee-dee-dee.” I’ll try to keep a closer watch this winter and see if I can catch them at it.