Black-capped Chickadees Like to Flock

Black-capped chickadees are social


Each winter, these birds form curious social flocks:


  • Open-door policy: Other species join chickadee flocks—including nuthatches, vireos, warblers and woodpeckers. Birders look and listen for chickadee flocks during spring and fall migrations, because it can yield sightings of less common birds.
  • Complex communicators: Chickadees have many complex calls and songs. Their namesake chick-a-dee-dee-dee call can serve as a warning to the flock about predators. The more dee notes included, the higher the potential danger.
  • Brain control: In the fall, they let old neurons die to make room for new memories. This allows them to keep up with changes in their flocks and remember new food storage locations.



Hear the chick-a-dee-dee-dee call



See This Bird!!!

Each month during our 2016 Bird the Preserves initiative, we’re giving you the opportunity to see some of the most interesting birds in the preserves:

The Black-capped Chickadee
Sunday, September 11 – 1:30 pm
Sand Ridge Nature Center
15891 S Paxton Ave, South Holland, IL 60473

Bird of the Month: Black-Capped Chickadee
Thursday, September 17 – 1 pm
Trailside Museum
738 Thatcher Ave, River Forest, IL 60305


Support for Bird the Preserves was generously provided by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service through Chicago Wilderness.

Visit two of the treasures of the Forest Preserves of Cook County