Monday, September 29, 2014
Bird of the Day: A Mountain Chickadee at Lake Tahoe
It was only one quick picture. I was wandering down the trail to Chimney Beach on the east shore of Lake Tahoe, and I soon realized I was surrounded by small birds flitting among the branches. There were dozens of them, and I had trouble catching any of them standing still. There was a lot of motion up there. I got a few well-focused shots of the Nuthatches, Saturday's bird of the day. On my quick review of the picture files, I thought this shot was another Nuthatch, but on closer inspection it turned out to be a Mountain Chickadee (Poecile gambeli). Upon reading about their habits, I learned that they often flock with other species in the conifer forests where they forage for food.
The Mountain Chickadees are found all over the mountainous regions of the Western United States. They eat seeds and insects, and are occasionally found at feeders (but not mine...).