ALERT: Yellow Cardinal In Kentucky

We interrupt this regularly scheduled blog post to direct your attention to a link to a YELLOW northern cardinal found in Kentucky.  This photo is interesting on many levels:  Number 1.  It's a freaking yellow cardinal.  Number 2.  Is that raw chicken breasts being offered as suet on that feeder? The cardinal is cool.  But what made it yellow?  I didn't think cardinal color came from food like it does with house finches.  Is this bird genetically lacking in carotenoids? So many questions!

If that is raw chicken in the suet feeder--that is disturbing.  Not due to cannibalism but raw chicken could have all sorts of disease transmittable to birds.  Think of the salmonella that could explode in a feeding situation.  I'm all for offering table scraps to birds, but for heaven sakes, if you're going to offer chicken, offer it cooked.

UPDATE 1: I just got an email from the photographer of the yellow cardinal in Kentucky:


I was reading your blog about the Yellow Cardinal that I took the picture of. I can assure you that it IS cantaloupe in the suet feeder. We were experimenting to see if the birds appreciated the sweetness of it.


David Gourley

UPDATE 2: I found a couple of other photos of yellow cardinals--one in Ohio and one in Mississippi (the male in Mississippi has even been observed feeding chicks, so hey, he found a mate).