Chickadees are a common sight in Maine, especially in the winter. While the black capped chickadee (Poecile atricapillus) is the most common chickadee in Maine, you may see Carolina chickadees, Boreal chickadees or even hybrids as the result of crossbreeding. These little birds flock to bird feeders gobbling up sunflower seeds while singing their cheery song of chick a dee dee dee. Interestingly, they were named by English settlers who first called them a chickadeedee. The name was later shortened to chickadee.
Chickadees are said to symbolize courage, curiosity and bravery, but that is not what they conjure up for me. Chickadees always remind me of my mother and her love for the natural world. These tiny birds were always her favorite as they flocked around her whenever she stepped out with fresh food.
Seeing or hearing chickadees brings a smile to my face as I know my mother's spirit cannot be far away.