If you have a lovely garden, you’ll no doubt have a wonderful selection of birds visiting. Identifying birds is all part of bird watching as a hobby.

Each bird has something wondrous about it and not two birds are the same really. Even birds of the same species who share some physical traits have some unique differences,

Interested in learning all about the Carolina Chickadee?

Birders try all kinds of things to attract a variety of birds to the garden and are simply delighted when the sweet little Carolina Chickadee is among them. It’s a small bird found mostly in the southern parts of the United States.

All about the Carolina Chickadee
Carolina Chickadee Standing on a Branch

The Carolina Chickadee is part of the Poecile family of birds, and the different species all live in North America. You’ll find two kinds of chickadees in North Carolina – the Carolina Chickadees, and the Black-capped Chickadees.

How is your yard set up to welcome and accommodate the sweet little feathered visitor? Will the small bird choose your garden because it sees excellent nesting and feeding opportunities?

Birds are such an integral part of our world and they do a magnificent job eating bothersome insects and pollinating plants.

There is a strong link between plants, insects, and birds and songbirds have specific nutritional requirements from plants and insects. The Carolina Chickadee relies heavily on insects as its primary food source to ensure its survival.

If you want to make sure that your garden is a top pick for this gorgeous little bird, make sure you have a nice selection of bushy shrubs and trees. These birds love forested areas and they will be searching for this kind of habitat in your garden.

Carolina Chickadee perching on edge of a bird bath.

Birders welcome the intelligent, bright-eyed, slightly comical little bird to come for food and shelter and will try and select plants and an environment that the Carolina Chickadee will love. It’s a social bird, loving to gather with other birds around the bird feeders.

Quite frankly, it is only avid birders who are likely to recognize the true Carolina Chickadee. The reason for this is that the bird looks very much like the Black-capped Chickadee.

If you want to learn all about the Carolina Chickadee and how to attract them to your garden, keep reading.

How to attract Carolina Chickadees to your garden

What would a garden be without the cute Carolina Chickadee? If you want to have this amazing little bird as a visitor, there are a few things you can do to attract them to your yard.

  • Plant the right plants that they love – plants with berries and flowers that attract insects.
  • Supply feeders with sunflower seeds, peanuts, or suet.
  • Provide a nest box.
  • Always provide water. This can be a birdbath or fountain.
Carolina Chickadee perching on edge of a very large concrete birdwatch.

So what exactly does the Carolina Chickadee look like?

  • It’s a small bird, much like a finch or sparrow.
  • The Carolina Chickadee has a black cap that covers the small black eyes.
  • It is probably about 4 ½ inches in length with a short blackish beak and matching black legs and feet.
  • The tail is fairly long and narrow.
  • The wings are a soft grey with whitish edges.
  • The cheeks are white and the small, plump-looking bird has a cream-colored underside.
  • Unlike many other bird species where the males are the fairer sex with more colorful plumage, the Carolina Chickadee’s males and females look alike.
  • As the seasons change, they don’t have any physical changes – their looks remain unchanged.

(Check out our Top 4 Binocular Recommendations for eyeglass wearers if you want to view the chickadee at a closer range – these will also work for those with perfect vision when adjusted correctly)

It’s also probably what makes them so special and popular with birders – they don’t come with any airs and graces and are just as-is.

Carolina Chickadee standing on edge of bird feeder

Carolina Chickadee Breeding and Nesting

  • Early April through to July
  • Some pairs stay together but loyalty isn’t a strong point with these cuties, and the female may well seek out greener pastures and look for a new mate in another area.
  • The female builds the nest in about 2 weeks.
  • The nest is roundish with a nesting cup that is roughly 3 inches across and 1inch deep. The nest site selected is often in a tree hole, sometimes an old woodpecker hole.
  • After breeding, the incubation period is between 12 to 15 days.
  • The eggs are a creamy white color with some reddish-brown speckles. They’re tiny eggs, about 0.58 x .50 inches.
  • The female lays eggs a couple of days after the nest is complete. She lays an egg a day and produces about 6 to 8 eggs. She has just one brood a year.
  • Both parents feed the baby birds.
  • Raccoons, squirrels, snakes, other birds, and domestic cats all prey on chickadee eggs and young.
  • The young birds fly off from the nest about 2 weeks after hatching.

What food appeals to the Chickadee?

It’s not really seed that is found on the top of the Carolina Chickadee’s favorite foods list. No, they have an insatiable appetite for insects and berries and they consume as much as their own body weight in food each day.

Closeup of blueberries on blueberry bush. Carolina chickadees love to eat berries.

They’re not opposed to some sunflower seeds, but insects are their favorite morsel and in fact, this food selection of insects makes up the biggest part of this little bird’s diet. That’s why it is so important to be careful with the use of pesticides in the garden as these spritely little birds are into your shrubs, trees, and creepers, foraging around.

All about the Carolina Chickadee – they have a song for the World

They’re chirpy little birds and you’ll find them flying in small vocal groups. Once you get to know its variety of vocal songs and chirps you will recognize that its song is slightly longer than that of the black-capped chickadee.

Their sweet songs are therapy in a world gone mad. Both the Black-capped- and the Carolina Chickadee have a song for the world. The Black-capped’s song is 2-noted and lower-pitched while Carolina’s song is higher-pitched and you can expect anything up to 6 notes.

Apart from their song, the Carolina chickadee bird call also includes some raspy sounding calls and some high-pitched warning calls when they sense danger. Sometimes they make a bit of a whirring sound with their wings too when they feel threate

Everything has to be in balance to avoid bird populations declining, Imagine a garden without birdlife and without the loyal Chickadee? While there are still birds such as the Caroline Chickadee active around us we can rest easy for a while as they are indicators that all is still well.