05/12/2014 09:24 EDT | Updated 07/12/2014 05:59 EDT

Black-capped chickadee crowned Vancouver's bird for 2015

With a flurry of votes outstripping the number of ballots cast in the last municipal election by a factor of almost five, Vancouverites have chosen a new bird to represent the city for 2015.

More than 700,000 online ballots were entered in the first annual city bird competition, with the black-capped chickadee winning with almost 278,000 votes — or just under 40 per cent of the popular vote.

The 2014 city bird, the northwestern crow, won its throne by acclamation but six nominees were put forward by the city for a public vote for 2015.

The four-week voting period ended at 7 p.m. PT Saturday night, and the winner was announced shortly after.

The runner-up, the varied thrush, came in with just under 203,000 votes — roughly 29 per cent — and Anna's hummingbird received just under 117,000 votes, or roughly 17 per cent of the votes.

The northern flicker put up a good fight, with over 92,000 votes, but the Pacific wren and pileated woodpecker fell far behind with fewer than 10,000 votes each.

The city says the contest was designed to raise awareness about the diversity of birds in Vancouver and their importance to a healthy ecosystem.