Legend

Introduction

Over its decade-plus of operations, the ABMI has generated a comprehensive dataset on Alberta’s species, their habitats, and the extent and type of human footprint across the province. With this information, the ABMI has developed analyses to predict species' relative abundances and examine species' responses to vegetation and soil types, as well as human footprint in Alberta. These methods have been applied to hundreds of species; this profile provides summary results for one.

Habitat & Human Footprint Associations

In northern Alberta, the Black-capped Chickadee prefers stands with deciduous trees; in southern Alberta, it is likely to be found in wooded coulees and valleys as well as urban and rural areas. Old or dead decidous trees with softer wood are essential for cavity nest excavation.

Species-habitat Associations in the Forested Region

Forested Region - Species Habitat Association Graph: Predicted species relative abundance (bars) as a function of vegetation and human footprint type in the forested region. Dots are added to forest types where harvesting occurs and show the predicted species abundance in harvested stands of various ages. Vertical lines represent 90% confidence intervals.

  • Black-capped Chickadee relative abundance is highest in rural residential and rough pasture human footprint types. Relative abundance is also high in deciduous and mixedwood forest stands and treed swamp vegetation types; it is generally common across upland forest types. 
  • In general, Black-capped Chickadee prefer mid-aged forest stands.
  • Black-capped Chickadee relative abundance is similar in harvested stands compared to naturally-disturbed stands of the same age.

Relationship to Linear Footprint


Relationship to Linear Footprint in the Forested Region

Linear Footprint Graph: Species relative abundance predicted for habitat with no human footprint compared to habitat in which 10% of the area is converted to either soft or hard linear footprint.

  • Black-capped Chickadee relative abundance is predicted to have a slight negative relationship with hard linear footprint and no relationship with soft linear footprint in the forested region.

If it is not possible to create complex habitat association models for species, we present a coarse index of habitat use which represents the proportion of detections in each native vegetation, soil, and human footprint type in comparison to the proportional availability of the habitat types.

Habitat Associations for Species with Few Detections in the Prairie Region

Use-availability index graph: Index of species habitat use based on the proportion of species detections in each native vegetation and human footprint type in comparison to the habitat availability. The index (bars) range from -1 (avoidance) to +1 (preference), given availability of a particular vegetation or human footprint type.

Impacts of Human Footprint

The Black-capped Chickadee is generally tolerant of human footprint; it is commonly observed in human-affected areas such as urban areas. It is also attracted to forest edge; however, forestry practices that eliminate preferred nesting locations such as old or dead deciduous trees or that result in excessive fragmentation can negatively affect nesting and winter travel.

Human Footprint Effects in the Forested Region

Local Scale Effects

Human Footprint Effects in the Forested Region

Figure: Local Scale Effects. Predicted changes to Black-capped Chickadee relative abundance inside areas that have been disturbed by each sector (human footprint type) compared to the habitat it replaced (modelled reference condition with no human footprint). Sector effect values less than 0% indicate habitat suitability is reduced (predicted related abundance is lower) compared to reference conditions, and values more than 0% indicate habitat suitability is improved (predicted relative abundance is higher) compared to reference conditions.

  • Black-capped Chickadee relative abundance is predicted to be lower than expected in all human footprint categories, except urban/industrial, compared to the habitat each footprint replaces in the prairie region.

Regional Population Effects

Human Footprint Effects in the Prairie Region

Figure: Regional Population Effects. Predicted change in the total regional population by industrial sector for Black-capped Chickadee. This incorporates the area of the footprint, the native habitats where the footprint occurs, and the species response to a particular footprint. Regional population effect values less than 0% indicate a predicted decrease in the regional population due to a particular sector’s footprint, and values greater than 0% indicate a predicted increase.

  • The regional population of Black-capped Chickadee is predicted to be less abundant than expected compared to reference conditions in the forested region as a result of agriculture footprint.
  • Changes in the regional population of Black-capped Chickadee are predicted to be small due to the other industrial sectors in the forested region.

Predicted Relative Abundance

The Black-capped Chickadee is commonly found in all of Alberta's forested natural regions and is most common in the Parkland, Foothills, and Boreal Forest Natural Regions.

Predicted Relative Abundance - Current

The current condition is the predicted relative abundance of Black-capped Chickadee taking current human footprint (circa 2018) into account.

use slider to compare maps


Predicted Relative
Abundance (%)

Predicted Relative
Abundance (%)

Predicted Relative Abundance - Reference

The reference condition shows the predicted relative abundance of Black-capped Chickadee after all human footprint had been backfilled based on native vegetation in the surrounding area.


Predicted Relative Abundance - Difference

The difference map shows areas where the current relative abundance of Black-capped Chickadee is predicted to be higher or lower compared to reference conditions. In other words, where habitat suitability is predicted to increase or decrease as a result of human footprint.


Predicted Change
in Relative
Abundance (%)
  • Black-capped Chickadee relative abundance is predicted to be lower under current conditions compared to reference conditions throughout much of its range in Alberta, especially in parts of the Boreal Forest and Parkland Natural Regions.

References & Credits

References & Credits

Boreal Avian Modelling Project. 2016. Black-capped Chickadee. http://www.borealbirds.ca/avian_db/accounts.php/Poecile+atricapillus. Accessed July 7, 2016.

Cornell Lab of Ornithology. 2016. All About Birds: Black-capped Chickadee. https://www.allaboutbirds.org/guide/Black-capped_Chickadee . Accessed June 11, 2016.

Proppe, D.A., K.A. Byers, C.B. Sturdy, C.C. St. Clair. 2013.  Physical condition of Black-capped Chickadees (Poecile atricapillus) in relation to road disturbance. Journal of Zoology 91(11): 842-845.

Sibley, D. 2000. The Sibley Guide to Birds.  Chanticleer Press, New York, NY.

St. Clair, C.C., M. Bélisle, A. Desrochers, and S. Hannon. 1998. Winter responses of forest birds to habitat corridors and gaps. Conservation Ecology 2(2):13.

Data Sources

Information from ABMI bird point counts was combined with information from other organizations and individuals:

  • Environment Canada (North American Breeding Bird Survey and Joint Oil Sands Monitoring programs)
  • Ecological Monitoring Committee for the Lower Athabasca (EMCLA)
  • Dr. Erin Bayne (University of Alberta)

Photo Credits

Photos: TBD

Recommended Citation

Alberta Biodiversity Monitoring Institute and Boreal Avian Modelling Project. 2020. Black-capped Chickadee (Poecile atricapillus). ABMI Website: abmi.ca/home/data-analytics/biobrowser-home/species-profile?tsn=554382.

Additional ABMI Resources

Alberta Biodiversity Monitoring Institute. 2016. ABMI Species Website Manual, Version: 2016-12-02. Alberta Biodiversity Monitoring Institute, Alberta, Canada. Report available at: abmi.ca.

Alberta Biodiversity Monitoring Institute. 2014. Manual for Species Modeling and Intactness, Version 2014-09-25. Alberta Biodiversity Monitoring Institute, Alberta, Canada. Report available at: abmi.ca.

Alberta Biodiversity Monitoring Institute. 2014. Terrestrial field data collection protocols (abridged version) 2016-05-18. Alberta Biodiversity Monitoring Institute, Alberta, Canada. Report available at: abmi.ca.

Download ABMI Species and Habitat Data.

View ABMI Collaborations.

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for testing profile: [{QALog=

Niki Wilson Edited for readability and new Naturelynx formatting. Nov-15-2016

 

Corrina Copp/Lucas Habib Submitted March-02-2016

KM comments --> please review the BB side for comments in bold. General comment, when writing bird profiles, please use "The Boreal Avian Modelling Project" website as a souce of information. Great source of information...

http://www.borealbirds.ca/avian_db/accounts.php/Poecile+atricapillus

KM comments --> Very close - like the addition of references...a few comments in bold mostly around clarification of language used.

 

Corrina Copp/Lucas Habib Published on March-02-2016

Corrina Copp/Lucas Habib Published on March-02-2016

, RevisionNL=ABMI Approval NL, RevisionBB=ABMI Approval BB, QAStatus=Published, AuthorName=(Linnaeus, 1766), smallProfile=http://abmi.ca/FileDownloadServlet?dir=WEB_GRAPH&filename=/profiles/Poecile-atricapillus-small.jpg, UpdatedDate=2016-03-02T23:00:00.000-07:00, WebMainDescription=

The Black-capped Chickadee is a small cavity-nesting bird that can be found year-round in all natural regions of Alberta; while it occurs throughout the province, it is less common in the Grassland Natural Region and the northerly portion of the Boreal Forest Natural Region. 

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In northern Alberta, the Black-capped Chickadee prefers stands with deciduous trees; in southern Alberta, it is likely to be found in wooded coulees and valleys as well as urban and rural areas. Old or dead decidous trees with softer wood are essential for cavity nest excavation.

, WebHFEffect=

The Black-capped Chickadee is generally tolerant of human footprint; it is commonly observed in human-affected areas such as urban areas. It is also attracted to forest edge; however, forestry practices that eliminate preferred nesting locations such as old or dead deciduous trees or that result in excessive fragmentation can negatively affect nesting and winter travel.

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The Black-capped Chickadee is commonly found in all of Alberta's forested natural regions and is most common in the Parkland, Foothills, and Boreal Forest Natural Regions.

, SummaryType=TRUE, QADate=2016-11-15T00:00:00.000-07:00, WebReference=

Boreal Avian Modelling Project. 2016. Black-capped Chickadee. http://www.borealbirds.ca/avian_db/accounts.php/Poecile+atricapillus. Accessed July 7, 2016.

Cornell Lab of Ornithology. 2016. All About Birds: Black-capped Chickadee. https://www.allaboutbirds.org/guide/Black-capped_Chickadee . Accessed June 11, 2016.

Proppe, D.A., K.A. Byers, C.B. Sturdy, C.C. St. Clair. 2013.  Physical condition of Black-capped Chickadees (Poecile atricapillus) in relation to road disturbance. Journal of Zoology 91(11): 842-845.

Sibley, D. 2000. The Sibley Guide to Birds.  Chanticleer Press, New York, NY.

St. Clair, C.C., M. Bélisle, A. Desrochers, and S. Hannon. 1998. Winter responses of forest birds to habitat corridors and gaps. Conservation Ecology 2(2):13.

, Year=2019, Note=

JW Jan 2017: BB slightly revised according to fall 2016 template.

, QAPerson=Niki Wilson | Katherine Maxcy |Niki Wilson, WebPhotos=[]}]
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