A rare yellow cardinal was first spotted in late January in Alabama. Photo by Jeremy Black.
Chances are you’ve seen red cardinals and brown cardinals. But have you ever seen a yellow cardinal?
This unique yellow cardinal was first seen in the backyard of Charlie Stephenson in Alabaster, Alabama in late January. The distinctive bird became a regular at her bird feeder, showing up at least once a day.
So why is this cardinal yellow? According to Auburn University biology professor Geoffrey Hill, the cardinal carries a genetic mutation that causes his feathers to be a brilliant yellow instead of the more common red shade. “Yellow cardinals are a one-in-a million situation,” Hill said.
A new kind of songbird with a bald face was recently discovered in Laos by biologists from the Wildlife Conservation Society and the University of Melbourne. The bare-faced bulbul is the only bald songbird living in mainland Asia, inhabiting an irregular limestone terrain.
The maleo is an endangered bird found only on the island of Sulawesi, in Indonesia. The maleo is about the size of a chicken, but it lays eggs up to five times as large as chicken eggs. The bird has yellow facial skin, a red-orange beak, a black ‘helmet’, and a black back and pink stomach.
Recently, the conservation of this strange bird has been helped by the purchase and protection of a stretch of beach used for breeding. The maleo buries its eggs in the warm sand of the beach to incubate. The eggs are then abandoned. Upon hatching, the chicks are able to fly and live on their own.
The stretch of beach was purchased for approximately $12,500. Funds were donated by the Lis Hudson Memorial Fund and the company Quvat Management. The 36 acre beach is now owned by Pelestari Alam Liar dan Satwa, known as PALS, a local conservation group.