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Photos: Finding new feathered friends at the bird feeder

A family of cardinals moved into Telegram photographer Jed Carlson's neighborhood.

A juvenile Northern Cardinal gets fed a sunflower seed from an adult male
A juvenile Northern Cardinal gets fed a sunflower seed from an adult male on top of a shepherd's hook in a yard in Superior in August 2022.
Jed Carlson / Superior Telegram
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SUPERIOR — For those of you who remember my visit from a cardinal in late July, I’ve got an exciting update: It seems there is a family of cardinals in my neighborhood.

For those that don’t remember the story, I grabbed a bird feeder that belonged to my late mother and hung it just outside my picture window. In no time at all, a male Northern Cardinal showed up to snack on the sunflower seeds in the feeder. I was very excited (yes, I know I’m getting pretty old if a bird at my feeder is making me excited — or maybe the fact I have a feeder means I’m old?).

Anywho, I was excited because not only had I never seen a cardinal in my neighborhood, but also cardinals were my mom’s favorite bird.

Fast forward to the day the original photos ran in the pages of the Telegram, and I started seeing what I learned was an adult female Northern Cardinal. Double score!

I made sure to keep my feeder stocked with plenty of sunflower seeds for my new friends and the local squirrels. My front yard looks more like the ground of a baseball dugout than a yard, but I’ll take that trade any day.

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Then, to my surprise, I looked out one morning and noticed a bunch of small red and gray birds picking at the seeds on the ground. Soon an adult male and adult female swooped onto branches to keep an eye on the younger cardinals below. Of course I took out the camera and got some family photos of my new neighbors.

A female Northern Cardinal shakes her feathers after puffing up while on a branch
A female Northern Cardinal shakes her feathers after puffing up while on a branch near Central Park in Superior in August 2022.
Jed Carlson / Superior Telegram
An adult male Northern Cardinal picks through sunflower seeds on the ground below a feeder
An adult male Northern Cardinal picks through sunflower seeds on the ground below a feeder in the Central Park area of Superior in August 2022.
Jed Carlson / Superior Telegram
A juvenile Northern Cardinal, left, rests near an adult female on a branch
A juvenile Northern Cardinal, left, rests near an adult female on a branch above a feeder in the Central Park area of Superior in August 2022.
Jed Carlson / Superior Telegram
A juvenile Northern Cardinal looks through a window as it sits on a shepherd's hook
A juvenile Northern Cardinal looks through a window as it sits on a shepherd's hook in a yard in Superior in August 2022.
Jed Carlson / Superior Telegram
A pair of Northern Cardinals explore the ground under a feeder
A pair of Northern Cardinals explore the ground under a feeder looking for sunflower seeds in the Central Park area of Superior in August 2022.
Jed Carlson / Superior Telegram
An adult female Northern Cardinal sits on a branch
An adult female Northern Cardinal sits on a branch near Central Park in Superior in August 2022.
Jed Carlson / Superior Telegram
A female Northern Cardinal eats sunflower seeds from a feeder
A female Northern Cardinal eats sunflower seeds from a feeder near Central Park in Superior in August 2022.
Jed Carlson / Superior Telegram

Related Topics: SUPERIOR, WISCONSINBIRDS
Jed Carlson joined the Superior Telegram in February 2001 as a photographer. He grew up in Willmar, Minnesota. He graduated from Ridgewater Community College in Willmar, then from Minnesota State Moorhead with a major in mass communications with an emphasis in photojournalism.
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