WiseAcre Gardens

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Posted by WiseAcre on Aug 23rd, 2009

Black Headed Cardinal

2009
Aug 23

A strange looking bird stopped by to use the glorified bird bath I made on Long Island. I identified it as a Cardinal as it flew in but after looking at the photos I had to second guess myself and double check.

Cardinal – Cardinalis cardinalis

Bald Cardinal
Seems it’s molting time and this handsome guy went bald. His head is black because his skin is black and Cardinals usually lose all their head feathers at once. Another reason his head could look black is the head feathers as they gow in are black.

Black Headed Cardinal
Desktop Wallpaper – 1024 x 768

Gone bald and without his crest he can still smile. I wonder if I could if i lost my ponytail.

14 Responses

  1. elephant's eye Says:

    Pony tail, on a bunny?!

  2. Meredith Says:

    Haha, what she said!

  3. Becky Says:

    He definitely is bald. You can see his ear hole. He shows no sign of new pin feathers coming in. Love your birdbath!

  4. Heather Says:

    Great shot! I think he looks great with male pattern baldness!

  5. Ratty Says:

    Maybe he could wear a baseball cap or something to cover his head until he gets some rogaine. He’s still a nice looking and unique bird.

  6. rainfield Says:

    Your bird looks not real. You have place a toy bird for photographing.
    I am right. Yeahhhh…

  7. Joel Says:

    Wow, nice birdbath. Oh that poor fella -didn’t know it happened to birds too!

  8. Monica the Garden Faerie Says:

    Wow, in the first photo the bird is so vibrant it almost doesn’t look real. What cool photos!

  9. Rick in Montreal Says:

    That is a real bird, rainfield. Here in Montreal, there are two male cardinals that visit daily with the same affliction. I don’t recall seeing capless males from previous seasons. I hope the cap grows back.

  10. Ruth Says:

    I have one too! Just like the one in the picture. I live in SE Massachusetts. Comes to my feeders everyday.

  11. Denise Says:

    It’s been driving me crazy trying to figure out the identification of a cardinal -like bird without a crest at my feeder.After searching the internet, I now realize my back yard bird is indeed a cardinal. I live on Cape Cod and have lots of cardinal couples, but never one like this who appears a loaner with featherless head.

  12. H. D. Johns Says:

    This summer I have two cardinals with no crest and totally black heads, one is a male, the other a female or juvenile. The come regularly to my feeder and I have been wondering if they are indeed cardinals. Thanks for clearing this up. Your pictures are perfect.

  13. John Kakos Says:

    Today was the first time that I’ve seen a Cardinal look like that…. We have a lot of them in NE Ohio. and I’m 67. Just plain cool..

  14. Nancy Says:

    Thanks for solving our backyard mystery.Blackheaded Cardinal had us stumped here in East Tennessee. Been a regular visitor all Summer.