Are bird feeders making birds lazy?

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By Luke Carroll, Ottawa Citizen, June 19, 2019

Birders can rejoice as a study recently published out of the University of Ottawa found bird feeders are not making black-capped chickadees lazier.

The animal cognition study, by researchers Megan Thompson, a master’s student in biology, and Julie Morand-Ferron, her supervisor, provided a rare look into the memories of the birds.

“There has not been that many studies on how animals learn and memorize things,” Morand-Ferron said.

Morand-Ferron said the black-capped chickadees have a system called caching, where they hoard food and burrow it in hundreds of different locations — meaning they need a spatial memory.