Northern Cardinal  ( Cardinal rouge )    This species is of special interest to Timiskaming birders.    All sightings should be documented and reported.

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Cardinalis cardinalis

 (No high quality local photo available yet for this species.) 

General Notes

Although not long ago considered outside of their normal range in Timiskaming, Cardinals appear to be uncommon but increasingly frequent visitors here.  They prefer the shrubby edges of wooded areas, though are easily attracted to backyard feeders.  They are not aggressive at the feeder, preferring to feed alone after other birds have finished, usually in late morning and just before dark. Cardinals form one of the most faithful pair bonds among birds, and call to each other year round.

A relative newcomer, the cardinal was unknown in Ontario before 1849. By 1976, its breeding range was considered to extend to Georgian Bay and Ottawa. The Northern Cardinal appears to be in the process of continued northward range expansion, and has nested north of Lake Superior. We will likely see its frequency continue to increase here in Timiskaming in the near future.

Abundance: Occasional Earliest observed date:  

Typical arrival date:

May 5
Breeding Status: Presumed Breeding Latest observed date: January 13 

Typical departure date:

December 20

Documented Observations

October 17 - December 2, 1989. One female observed in Swastika by Ann Gaston, Ralph Gaston and Lloyd Taman.  Accepted OBRC record on file.

October 30 - November 6, 1989. Two male and one female observed in Matachewan, found by Harold King and also observed by Lloyd Taman. Accepted OBRC record on file.

November 13, 1989 to March 8, 1990. One female observed in Virginiatown by Percy Richter. Accepted OBRC record on file.

November 17, 1990. Two males observed near Boston Creek. Accepted OBRC record on file, filed by Lloyd Taman.

May 11, 1991. Two pair observed in Kirkland Lake, found by Vic Neilson and also observed by Lloyd Taman. Accepted OBRC record on file.

June 22, 1992. One observed in New Liskeard by Gertrude Trudel.

December 25, 1995. One observed during New Liskeard Christmas Bird Count

October 29, 1997. One female reported in Timiskaming by Bruce Murphy (location not specified).

November 18, 1997. One male reported in Englehart by Bruce Murphy.

December 22, 1998. One adult observed during the Christmas Bird Count in Dawson Point Road area of New Liskeard.

February 1, 1999. One adult observed at feeders in Dawson Point Road area of New Liskeard, perhaps the same bird as above.

November 8, 1999. One male reported at a feeder 10 minutes outside of New Liskeard, reported by Bruce Murphy.

November 18, 2000. One female observed in New Liskeard area by Bruce Murphy.

December 16, 2000. Two observed during New Liskeard Christmas Bird Count.

December 15, 2001. One observed during New Liskeard Christmas Bird Count.

December 29, 2004. One observed at a feeder near Thornloe, as reported to Ontbirds by Bruce Murphy.

November 5-20, 2007. One observed at several feeders in the Elk Lake and Kenabeek areas.

January 13, 2008.  One female observed at a feeder in New Liskeard by Peter Gilboe.

May 5-9, 2009. One observed at a feeder in Evanturel Twp. by Shirley and Arnold McKale