Northern cardinals are found throughout much of the eastern, central, southern, and southwestern United States, as well as in eastern Mexico and as far south as Guatemala and Belize. The northern cardinal (Cardinalis cardinalis) is a bird in the genus Cardinalis; it is also known colloquially as the redbird, common cardinal, red cardinal, or just cardinal (which was its name prior to 1985). Growing chicks are, however, fed exclusively on insects. It takes just 10 – 11 days for the chicks to begin fledging, and they are independent soon after.  In the Southwest, more local; occurs in tall brush, streamside thickets, groves of mesquites in desert.  The female generally incubates the eggs, though, rarely, the male will incubate for brief periods of time. Bird-friendly landscaping has allowed this species to thrive in urban areas as well as undisturbed forests. Red birds, Common cardinals, Virginia nightingales, Cardinal grosbeaks, Cardinal-birds, Cardinal red-birds, Virginia redbirds, Crested redbirds, Top-knot redbirds. Its range also extends south through Mexico to the Isthmus of Tehuantepec, northern Guatemala, and northern Belize. Over the past 200 years, this species has increased in geographic range and number. The plumage color of the males is produced from carotenoid pigments in the diet. During courtship, the male feeds seed to the female beak-to-beak. In winter they feed in large flocks of as many as 60 to 70, mainly in open thickets on the ground, but they also forage in bushes and trees. The iris of the eye is brown. It is suggested that this is because of the differences in levels of hormones of the two sexes.. A group of cardinals is known by many names including a "college", "deck", "radiance", "conclave", and "Vatican" of cardinals. In 1918, the scientific name was changed to Richmondena cardinalis to honor Charles Wallace Richmond, an American ornithologist. Even the brown females sport a sharp crest and warm red accents. They inhabit woodland edges, streamside thickets, swamps and vegetation near houses in … Found in a wide variety of brushy or semi-open habitats in the East, from forest clearings and swamps to city parks, almost wherever there are some dense bushes for nesting. They are also commonly referred to as redbirds, red cardinals, common cardinals, or simply, cardinals. This makes the species the northernmost of the cardinal species, hence the "northern" part of …  In 1983, the scientific name was changed again to Cardinalis cardinalis and the common name was changed to "northern cardinal", to avoid confusion with the several other species also termed cardinals. Its habitat includes woodlands, gardens, shrublands, and wetlands.  It was initially included in the genus Loxia (as Loxia cardinalis), which now contains only crossbills.  In the United States, this species receives special legal protection under the Migratory Bird Treaty Act of 1918, which also banned their sale as cage birds. This species is not migratory but is a year-round resident within its range. Both male and female cardinals sing, with beautiful, loud whistled phrases, sounding like "whacheer whacheer" and "whoit whoit whoit". For the plant, see, Halkin, S., S. Linville. During the season, male and female engage in courtship displays, swaying from side to side with necks outstretched, crests erect, while singing softly. Although some controversy surrounds bird feeding, an increase in backyard feeding by humans has generally been beneficial to this species.  The male averages slightly larger than the female. They also may influence the composition of the plant community through their seed eating. The brown females even have a sharp crest and red accents. In winter, most will roost and flock together. This species has also been introduced to Bermuda, California, and Hawaii. (1999). The male is a vibrant red, while the female is a reddish olive color. In Central America they range along the eastern coast as far south as northern Belize.  It is also protected by the Convention for the Protection of Migratory Birds in Canada. Sometimes they will drink maple sap out of sapsucker holes. It can be found in southeastern Canada, through the eastern United States from Maine to Minnesota to Texas, and south through Mexico, Belize, and Guatemala.