Photography by Vincent Mistretta


Molting Black Capped Chickadee

08.13.13 | 4 Comments

This is what the Black Capped Chickadees usually look like in my backyard. They are a fairly common species for me so I am a little curious as to why I never noticed them molting before.

BZBC_00271 as Smart Object-1 copy

Below is an image made this past weekend. It was overcast so the birds colors do not pop the same way as in the image above. I can tell you from first hand information that a little sunshine wasn’t going to help this little fella :-) He looked down right ratty. The only other thing I could think of is this was a juvenile but given how big he is, I ruled that out. Anyone have an opinion?

BZBC_00288 as Smart Object-1 copy

After checking several sources it appears that mid-August molts are common for Black Capped Chickadees.

BZBC_00293 as Smart Object-1 copy

Its funny how you can find something new even in something you thought was common and you have seen 1000 times before.

Images captured on Nikon D3x w/600mm f/4 and Tc-14e on Lexar Digital FIlm.


  • On 08.13.13 Denise Ippolito wrote these words:

    Hi Vinnie, nice images, thanks for the info.

  • On 08.19.13 Kathie wrote these words:

    Vincent, I miss seeing these guys! This little one sure does look ratty, though when he is done molting he will look nice and dapper again!

  • On 08.22.13 Vincent Mistretta wrote these words:

    If it stops raining on the weekends I might have a chance to photograph him dapper again.

  • On 08.23.13 Mia McPherson wrote these words:

    Vince, I sure miss seeing these birds too so molting or not I enjoy this post!

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