Cardinalis cardinalis, colloquially known as the cardinal, is the state bird of Ohio. This state shares the same state bird with six other states. The cardinal is common in the eastern parts of the United States, and it can often be found in forests and back yards. It is very easily recognized, because of its bright red feathers.
Before the cardinal became the state bird of Ohio, it was adopted as the state bird of Illinois in 1928. Five years later, in 1933, the cardinal became the official state bird of Ohio, as well as Indiana. Kentucky, North Carolina, Virginia, and West Virginia all followed suit in the 1940s.
It was rare to see the state bird of Ohio in this state in the 1600s and 1700s, when the first European settlers arrived. After the settlers began to clear parts of the forest for their homes, these birds began to show themselves on a regular basis. By the 1900s these birds were abundant in just about every part of the state.
The state bird of Ohio can also be found in most parts of the eastern United States. It can also be found in eastern Mexico and southeastern Canada. Small numbers of these birds can be found in parts of California and Hawaii, where they were introduced.
They can usually be found on the edges of woodlands and forests. Cardinals can also be found inhabiting gardens and parks. Many residents can also attract the state bird of Ohio with back-yard bird feeders. These birds often seem to prefer bird seed that contains sunflower seeds.
Like many other birds, the male of this species is more noticeable. Its body and crest are bright red in color, but it has a patch of black on its face. This black area surrounds its eyes and red beak, and extends down its throat.
Female cardinals are typically much less conspicuous. They are mostly brown, except for a slight red hue on their wings, tails, and crests. Like the males, the females also have red bills and dark faces.
Unlike some other birds, cardinals do not migrate during the winter. In fact, many cardinals don't usually go farther than a mile away from where they were born. They will usually mate twice during the year, once in the spring and once in the summer. The eggs hatch within two weeks, and the young are able to fly a little less than a month later.