Never go out WITHOUT your camera tripod! It’s one of the number one sins, especially when you are trying to video Northern Cardinal Finches.
Photo by Wikipedia… Not by me! Thankyou Wiki!
Still I did manage a very wobbly bit of footage, and it does show you how gorgeous these birds are. When you see them in the green undergrowth they glow. The red of their feathers shines out from the mangrove, as they hop from branch to branch. Unfortunately only the males are red, the females being a dull beige colour (sorry girls!).
This one was seen while I was walking through the mangroves at our neighbouring island, Long Key. Cardinals are about the size of a blackbird and eat all sorts of things including beetles, cicadas, grasshoppers, snails, wild fruit and berries, corn and oats, sunflower seeds, the blossoms and bark of elm trees, and drink maple sap from holes made by sapsuckers (a type of woodpecker).
To finish, here’s a strange bit of “cardinal finch” trivia:
“The plumage color of the male cardinal is produced from carotenoid pigments in the diet. Coloration is produced from both red pigments and yellow carotenoid pigments. Northern Cardinal males possess the ability to metabolize carotenoid pigments to create plumage pigmentation of a different color than the ingested pigment. When fed only yellow pigments, males become a pale red color, rather than a yellow.”
Don’t ever say this website isn’t educational. I’m sure you can use that little gem at your next party to impress the neighbours! OK, maybe not…