Though the males sport the signature red color, both male and female northern cardinals are beautiful, welcome additions to backyard across the country. Learn how to attract northern cardinals to your yard, and listen to their song.
Photo: Roland Jordahl
- Scientific Name: Cardinalis cardinalis.
- Family: Finch.
- Length: 8-3/4 inches.
- Wingspan: 12 inches.
- Distinctive Markings: Male is bright red with a black face. Also has a prominent crest and red bill. Female is fawn colored with red accents.
- Nest: Three to four whitish-gray eggs with brown speckles. Builds a nest of twigs and grasses hidden in dense trees or shrubs.
- Song: Over 2 dozen different songs. Most common is "What cheer! What cheer! What cheer!"
- Habitat: Sheltered backyards, woodland edges and parks.
- Diet: Seeds and insects.
- Backyard Favorites: Sunflower seeds and cracked corn.
Listen to this bird’s song