The Junior Woodchucks of the World are the Scouting organization to which Heuy, Dewey & Louie belong. They have a uniform with a coonskin cap. The Junior Woodchucks were created by Carl Barks in 1951, in the story "Operation St. Bernhard" ( Walt Disney's Comics and Stories #125). Later stories introduced a similar organization for girls, Junior Chickadees, to which Daisy Duck's nieces, April, May & June belong. A hallmark of the Woodchucks are exalted titles and ranks (Huey, Dewey, and Louie being promoted to become Ten Star Generals in the 1952 story of that name) and the awarding of buckets of badges, along with severe ideals as to decorum. In this way Barks poked gentle but pointed satire at aspects of the Boy Scouts.
The Junior Woodchucks also have Scoutmasters. This role is usually taken by Donald, or Launchpad McQuack in DuckTales, where they also had a baseball team, which Launchpad also coached. In some Italian stories the scoutmaster is a tall, strong and wise (but that fears flight) goose called gran mogol (the great moghul), whose name is Bertie McGoose.
Junior Woodchucks always carry with them a copy of the Juniro Woodchucks Guidebook, a guidebook filled with detailed and pertinent information about whatever country or situation the Woodchucks find themselves. Its depth of coverage is remarkable, considering that it is a small paperback book.
Don Rosa wrote and drew a story regarding the origin of the Junior Woodchucks Guidebook, "Guardians of the Lost Library", which Comics Buyer's Guide mentioned as possibly the greatest comic book story of all time. Rosa's later story W.H.A.D.A.L.O.T.T.A.J.A.R.G.O.N. tells of how Huey, Dewey, and Louie came to join the Junior Woodchucks.
In 1971 Carl Barks drew a model sheet of the nephews, with some of the drawings showing them in their Junior Woodchuck uniforms, for the Disney studio's publications department.
Most of the early Junior Woodchucks stories appeared in Walt Disney's Comics and Stories. In 1966, they got their own title, Huey, Dewey, and Louie and the Junior Woodchucks, published by Gold Key Comics for 62 issues, and then continued by Whitman Comics for another 20 issues until 1983. The stories which Carl Barks wrote for this comic book, among the last comic book stories he scripted, were drawn by Kay Wright, John Carey and Tony Strobl. More recently Daan Jippes has been commissioned by Egmont to redraw these stories emulating Barks' style and drawing inspiration from the sketches of Barks' storyboard-like scripts.
Disney Comics published a Junior Woodchucks four issue mini series in 1991. Today, their stories are printed in Walt Disney's Comics and Stories, published by Gemstone Comics.
Comedian Jeff Foxworthy once claimed, in his TV show, to have been a member of the Junior Woodchucks in his childhood.
The Chickadee Patrols, sometimes also called the Littlest Chickadees, are female counterparts to the Junior Woodchucks. The Chickadees first appeared in "The Chickadee Challenge," a Carl Barks Donald Duck story in Walt Disney's Comics and Stories #161 (1954). The Chickadees' Duckburg patrol is led by a brawny woman named Captain Ramrod. Daisy Duck's nieces April, May, and June Duck are members of the Chickadees. The Chickadees are named after the chickadee, a species of small bird; the phrase "littlest chickadee" also suggests "my little chickadee", a term of endearment classically used by W. C. Fields.
The Chickadee Patrols are based to some extent on the Girl Scouts of the USA and the Campfire Girls. In the spirit of friendly rivalry, the Duckburg troops of the Little Chickadees and Junior Woodchucks once held a bridge-building competition, which ended in a tie.
Carl Barks wrote a poem which mentions the rivalry between the two groups:
- The world is full of clans and cults
- Abuzz as angry bees
- And Junior Woodchucks snapping jeers
- At Littlest Chickadees