Northern Cardinal Is The Official State Bird Of North Carolina. North Carolina designated the northern cardinal (Cardinalis cardinalis) as the official state bird in 1943. Cardinals Are One of America’s Favorite Backyard birds and are the state bird in seven states: Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, North Carolina, Ohio, Virginia, and West Virginia. The State Bird Of North Carolina Cardinals is in the family of Cardinalidae, which are passerine birds found in North and South America.
Both North Carolina State Bird male and female can be identified by the large, pointed crest on the head. A cardinal has a thick beak, too. The average length of an adult cardinal is about eight inches. They live in forest edges, thickets, parks, gardens, and suburban areas. Cardinals are even found in our large cities. In spring, the female and male work together to build the nest of grasses, bark, vines, sticks, and other plant materials.
Identification And General Description
The Northern Cardinal is a mid-sized songbird.
Size: 8 – 9 inches
Color: Male cardinals are bright red, with a black face and chin. State Bird Of North Carolina Females is gray-brown on the back, light tan on the breast, with bright pink highlights on the wings, tail, and crest. A female cardinal’s bill is bright orange-red.
North Carolina State Birds A cardinal nest is a bulky structure of vines, leave, and twigs. It is often hidden in a thicket. The Northern Cardinal nest is usually within ten feet of the ground. Three to four Northern Cardinal eggs will hatch after twelve days, and the fledglings leave the nest when they’re between ten and twelve days old.
Food and Predators
Plant seeds and fruits comprise 90 percent of the cardinal’s food in the fall and winter, and 40 to 50 percent of their food in the summer. A cardinal’s predators are hawks, squirrels, and owls.
Habitat and Range
State Bird Of North Carolina Cardinals is very adaptable. They are found in hardwood forest habitats, small rural and urban woodlots, farmsteads, orchards, and urban backyards. They do best where there is thick, shrubby growth for them to nest and roost in.
Population and Management
North Carolina State Bird Northern cardinals are common in Minnesota. As a breeding species, it spread from southeastern Minnesota into Minneapolis and west to Owatonna by the 1920s. Now it occupies much of the state.