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Jan 9, 2017

Rare Yellow Northern Cardinal becoming less rare

 Photo by BarrytheBirder
Northern Cardinal

 Photo by Horatio Luna
Yellow Cardinal

Photo by Collier Holmes
Yellow Northern Cardinal
I am quite familiar with Northern Cardinals (see top photo).   I have them in my backyard every day, year around.   They are a favourite bird of both me and my wife.   Just recently I saw an item about a Yellow Northern Cardinal (see third photo).   I did not know they existed.   They have been considered very rare for a long time.   They are yellow, not red, because of a genetic abnormality called Xanthochroism.   There is also a Yellow Cardinal (see middle photo), which is common to South America.   I've now learned there are 45 to 48 species listed under the tribe 'Cardinalini', plus cardinals are closely related to many grosbeaks, tanagers, saltators and seedeaters.   In recent years, more and more reports of sightings are being made, particularly in southern USA states.   I look forward to being amazed and thrilled one day to see a Yellow Northern Cardinal in my Canadian backyard. However, I have just celebrated my 75th birthday, so I hope this lovely bird turns up sooner rather than later.
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