Sisters Country birds


Last updated 6/20/2023 at 11:14am

Photo by Douglas Beale

The Mountain Chickadee.

Often traveling in a group, they glean insects within pine, fir, and spruce trees in the forest or around our houses. The Mountain Chickadee [Poecile gambeli] will sing its merry, slightly hoarse fee-bee or chick-adee-adee-adee song.

They prefer high-altitude forests and are found in the mountains from the Yukon down to Baja California and southern New Mexico.

The Mountain Chickadee will choose a mate for life and is a cavity nester who molds its nest with fur and lays five to nine white eggs which incubate for 12-15 days. During this time, when the female leaves the nest she will cover the eggs with a fur plug, which will maintain the eggs temperature. The chicks are fed by both parents a diet of insects including beetles, aphids, caterpillars, and wasp larvae. In 17-23 days the young leave the nest and will flock with the adults until the fall season. The oldest Mountain Chickadee recorded was 10 years old.

A common bird at a black sunflower feeder, the Mountain Chickadee will use nest boxes around our houses and produce several broods during their season. A group of chickadees is known as a "dissimulation" or a "banditry" of chickadees.

To view more images of the Mountain Chickadee, visit


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