Cardinals are the most popular state bird, officially named State Bird of Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, North Carolina, Ohio, Virginia, and West Virginia. Cardinals are a songbird consisting of a series of clear whistles. Mated pairs will often share the same song, with the females singing a longer, more complex song than her mate.

Cardinals can be found in both Northern and Southern states, and will remain in their northern homes through the deep and cold winters. For this reason, platform bird feeders with covers are very helpful in keeping the birds well fed through winter months. Cardinals do well in survival and have enjoyed increases in population, mostly due to bird feeders and direct attempts to keep birds fed throughout the year.

Cardinals can be spotted with the male's glossy, bright red coloring, with black only around the face. Female cardinals are more grayish tan with red only around the tail and wings. Males are very territorial, so attracting cardinals with a window bird feeder is not the best method. Males have been known to fight with their mirror reflections for hours.

Cardinals are best fed using hopper feeders, tube bird feeders, and platform feeders. They are seed eaters and enjoy black oil sunflower seed, but also munch on peanuts and pulpy fruits including grapes and berries.