In the three years I lived in my rental house just north of where I live now, I saw a red Cardinal bird one time. I had previously lived just down the road and used to feed many cardinals, but for some reason, the rental had none. No matter what I did I couldn’t get a Cardinal to visit, but now I have them again. I don’t know why this makes me so happy, but it does.
Before my life fell apart and I lost my home, I counted birds for Project Feeder Watch and loved doing so. I learned the names of new birds as they visited my yard and helped science in the meantime. It was while I lived there that I became used to the chipping sound the Cardinal makes and hadn’t heard it in years until just about a week ago.
I was working at my desk which looks out to the front yard, and there is the little pine tree outside the window was a bright red Cardinal! And there was no food out for him! Right away I added a feeder to the tree and scattered black oil sunflower seeds on the ground (where the Cardinals prefer to eat) and sure enough, I now get them regularly. Each morning, as it’s just getting light – around 6:30, I hear their chipping outside my office window, so I make sure to scatter seed out there the night before. Then they get to eat before all the squirrels and bluejays gobble it up.
The top picture is not mine – I take horrible animal photos – but the bottom one is. The little girl Cardinal sat happily eating seeds from my favorite hopper feeder long enough for me to get a shot of her.
- Feeding Wildlife: Squirrels Getting Fat on Bird Seed (newenglandsnarrowroad.wordpress.com)
- Project FeederWatch (paulasgardenpatch.com)
- The High Cost Of Feeding (abirdersnotebook.wordpress.com)