Red-crested Cardinal

Paroaria coronata




Tanagers (Thraupidae)

Code 4


Code 6



Egg Color:

Green-white mottled and streaked with gray and brown-olive.

Number of Eggs:

2 - 4

Incubation Days:

10 - 13

Egg Incubator:


Nest Location:

In a tree, about 25 feet above the ground.

Nest Material:

Twigs and grasses.





Red-crested Cardinal: Native to South America. In Hawaii commonly found on lawns and in parks. A medium-sized passerine with bright red head, crest, face, chin and upperbreast. Upperparts are gray with an incomplete white collar that nearly meets at back of neck. Underparts are white. Bill is light gray. Sexes are similar. Juvenile resembles adult; has brown head and upperbreast. Crest is dull orange with a brown wash; crown feathers often dark-centered. Upperparts are washed pale brown; bill is dark gray with a contrasting pink gape area.

Range and Habitat

Red-crested Cardinal: This species is native to South America, but was introduced to the Hawaiian Islands around 1930. In Hawaii, these birds prefer parks, lawns and dry thickets in Hawaii; however, within their South American range, they can be found in subtropical or tropical dry shrubland and degraded forests.

Breeding and Nesting

Red-crested Cardinal: Two to four green-white eggs, mottled and streaked with gray and brown-olive, are laid in a woven cup-shaped nest. Incubation takes 10 to 13 days and is primarily carried out by the female. Chicks fledge 14 to 18 days after hatching.

Foraging and Feeding

Red-crested Cardinal: These cardinals are often seen foraging on or near the ground and in shrubbery. They feed primarily on seeds, but they also eat small arthropods, plant matter and fruit. They have a strong beak to crack seeds. They prefer insects during the breeding season. These cardinals are often found in pairs or small family groups.

Readily Eats

Fruit, Seeds


Red-crested Cardinal: Both sexes sing "wheet-cheer-up", song is a series of whistles that alternate up and down, more melodious and quieter than a Northern Cardinal. Call is a soft, squeaky note.

Similar Species

Red-crested Cardinal: Yellow-billed Cardinal lacks crest, has black chin and throat, and black upperparts.


Belly, undertail coverts, chest, flanks, and foreneck.

Back, rump, hindneck, wings, and crown.
The area of the face just below the bill.
Similar to the upper part of the human neck, located at the back of the crown.
Tufts of feathers on the head of the bird.
The crown is the top part of the birds head.
The front part of the head consisting of the bill, eyes, cheeks and chin.
Also called commissure, it is the hinge where the mandibles meet.
Parts of a Standing bird X
Head Feathers and Markings X
Parts of a Flying bird X