northern cardinal

Cardinalis cardinalis

Possibly the most easily recognized bird in North America, the cardinal offers a melodious song, splashy red color and jaunty crest all year, since it does not migrate in winter. Females sport a subtler brown. Its heavy conical bill is good for cracking hard seed hulls but is also adept at eating soft fruits and insects like potato bugs and tomato hornworms. Along with other birds, cardinals love to eat salt. Put out a bowl of rock salt or set out a salt block (available at feed stores).

Cardinals also really enjoy birdbaths. A bit of clean water will provide you with lots of lively entertainment.