Bullfinch vs Northern Cardinal

cardinal 3 The first time I saw a cardinal, a northern cardinal that is, was when I lived in Princeton, N J many years ago. It was almost hard to believe that this stunning red bird was for real and not some kind of odd canary that had just escaped from its cage. A bird that immediately brought to mind the Vatican Cardinals.
“Hm, well, where do you think he got his name from?”
“OK, I get the point! ”


Anyway, it is difficult to compete in grandeur with a bird that totally takes the breath out of you. But why compete, let’s enjoy our own little “cardinal” instead, the bullfinch.

Bullfinch 1


Bullfinch 3


The elegant and stylish Mrs Bullfinch.

Bullfinch 4


In the winter the bullfinch often visits bird tables in gardens but is a rarely seen bird during summer when it hides in dense spruce and mixed forests. This one we were fortunate to spot during an evening hike last summer.



4 thoughts on “Bullfinch vs Northern Cardinal

  1. What a coincidence … we are having regular visits to our garden bird table from a gorgeous pair of bullfinches (your photos of these birds are superb by the way) even in the milder weather we are now getting. They started visiting in the deeper snow and cold, but are still coming back. No cardinals in this part of the world.
    As a gardener, a bit suspicious of the big bullfinches as I know they have a reputation for destroying buds on fruit trees … but undoubtedly bring glamour to the garden.

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