Northern Cardinal With Tumor

That missing leg surely involves an accident, those missing feathers may be mites, but now we have a male Northern Cardinal with what looks like a tumor on his head:

Cardinal with tumor

Cardinal with tumor

It’s not obvious in that picture, but the black patch seems to be the rubbed-raw top of a growth.

Prior to these birds, in all the years we’ve been birdwatching we’ve never seen any damaged cardinals…


  1. #1 by Raj on 2012-04-09 - 08:55

    I think we should build a DIY chromatography or something to find what poisons we are ingesting. Just to illustrate, small illiterate farmers simply dip their veggies into insecticide to get rid of pests just before market sale.

    • #2 by Ed on 2012-04-09 - 10:01

      simply dip their veggies into insecticide

      Rinsing them afterward in whatever water might come to hand; that drainage ditch doesn’t have too much sewage this early in the day.

      We techies assume everybody reads the labels and acts accordingly, but (as you point out) that’s entirely invalid. Heck, even folks who can read often don’t bother.