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.
The elegant and stylish Mrs Bullfinch.
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.