Northern cardinals remain paired up throughout the year, unlike most bird species. Male will feed female while she sits on the nest and the male will also feed the female. Young Cardinals have a black beak and adults have beaks in a reddish, orange or pink coloring. Read about how to attract this stunning bird to your yard.
MATING & COURTSHIP
• The female cardinal will choose the nesting site and build the nest. The males will sometimes bring building materials.
• The male cardinal will feed the female seeds and berries as tokens of affection.
• Females lay three to four eggs during the spring mating season and again in the summer.
• Females will sit on the nest while the males gather food for her
• The female sits on the nest
• Males gather food for her and the fledglings, meals can up to 7 times an hour the first week.
• The second week the male tapers the meals down to about three an hour.
• At about the 5-week mark the fledglings will begin flying.
WAYS TO LURE NORTHERN CARDINAL TO YOUR YARD
Plant Trees & Shrubs
Plant trees and shrubs that produce berries. Besides seed and insects, the Northern Cardinal eats plenty of berries and having trees and shrubs that produce berries is a natural way to lure the birds to your yard.
- Blueberry bushes
- Mulberry trees
- Honeysuckle hedges
- Other dark-colored berries
The birds are not as picky as most and can be tempted by many additional fruits especially during the winter months when berries on trees start getting picked clean.
Planting Trees & Shrubs Bring Insects Cardinals Eat
Offer A Buffet at Your Feeder
Thick-Shelled Safflower Seeds – Not sure what safflower seed is? That is a fair question, the seed has grown in popularity in the past few years. I’ve answered some questions you might have on safflower seed in this article. Ready to try your hand at growing your own safflowers and letting them go to seed? If you don’t wish to grow your own, purchase seed and offer it up to your feathered friends, they love using their strong beaks to break open the seeds.
Black Oil Sunflower Seed – Cardinals love black oil sunflower seed and the seed is an oil-rich, high-protein choice that appeals to almost every seed-eating species. An excellent seed choice for hopper, tube, and tray or open platform bird feeders.
Some additional birds that eat black oil sunflower seed include chickadees, nuthatches, finches of all types, sparrows, jays, woodpeckers, grosbeaks and indigo buntings.
Suet – Cardinals have been known to eat nips of suet during the winter at my feeders to help regulate their body temperatures in the cold. You can purchase suet or make your own.
Feeders on Amazon:
|Tube Feeder||Platform Feeder|
|Hopper Feeder||Suet Feeder|
Fruit In a Dish
Even if you have fruit-bearing trees, add additional cut up fruits that are a past prime to a platform feeder or dish.
Offer the Following Fruit Choices:
- Apple slices
In order to attract any wildlife to your backyard, you have to research what items attract the wildlife to live or visit an area. If you add a few elements that attract Northern Cardinals like trees and shrubs and feeders that offer fruits, suet, sunflower seed and safflower seed that will greatly improve your chance that the birds will stick around your property for you to enjoy.