February 25, 2014

Signs of Spring – Chickadee spring call

photo by Anne Greene
The gregarious champion of Massachusetts birds, the Black-capped chickadee is not only the state bird, a feeder favorite, and friendly charmer but its gentle song is a kind reminder that spring is near. The Black-capped chickadee is a “name sayer” or bird named after its own call or song. Like the Whip-poor-will, Bobwhite, and Crow the chickadee also tells the birder who it is through song. Most commonly heard saying “chick-a-dee-dee-dee” it often shortens this to a quick “chick-a-dee”.

But, as the roof begins to drip and some deep push of sprout begins to break the ground the chickadee turns to a melodious two noted “sweet-ie” or “see-saw” song. This welcoming two note song is heard beginning on sunny February days. The song is bright and breaks through the needles. Listen for the “sweet-ie” call, turn to face the sun, and close your eyes. Spring is near.  


The Leo Family said...

nicely said

Laurie said...

Such a great blog! This one brought a little happy tear to my eye with thoughts of spring!

falcon86e said...

I love this blog! I always associated this two-note call with spring but I never knew it was the chickadee.

Sara Smith said...

I've always felt that the chickadee's spring call carries a special blessing. And speaking of blessings, it's wonderful to follow a blog that includes such things!

Linda said...

Oh, I am so happy to find out the author of that beautiful, unique, and emotion-provoking sound is our little chicadee. Sweetie, Phoebe, whatever the name, it's divinely inspired.

Luke said...

I always thought the spring chickadee call was a mating call. Is that correct?

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is an educator, bird watcher, and writer fascinated by the intersections of place, people, nature, and culture. He works for Mass Audubon and lives in the heart of Massachusetts. For questions or comments please contact: alexanderjosephdunn@gmail.com

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