People admire cardinals for their beautifully-colored, lucrative plumage and their behavioral traits. Some people love observing how these birds sing, eat, fly and move their crests. Yes, these birdies raise and lower their crests, but why do cardinals raise their crest?
They keep their crown in the upright position mostly when they are angry. FYI, agitated cardinals display different levels of aggression with their posture. To express their wrath, sometimes they raise their crests and start calling at a loud pitch.
But this isn’t the only emotion making cardinals lift their crests. Sometimes they do it without any reason. That said, this blog post is all about cardinal crests. So, to learn more about their crowns, let’s read.
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Can Cardinals Move Their Crests?
Like blue jays, tufted titmice, and other Crown-owned birdies, cardinals can also move their crests according to their moods. Most of the time, these birds keep their crests upright.
But when they get too excited, they can raise their crowns even further. Likewise, they can lower their crests when feeling bored.
Do Cardinals Always Raise Crests When They Are Angry?
Many birders believe that cardinals’ raised crests indicate their agitation. Well, every time, this statement doesn’t match with cardinals’ emotions because they sometimes raise their crowns while singing or eating.
Even some cardinals raise their crowns while dwelling around here and there. So, after spotting a cardinal with a raised crown, you shouldn’t conclude that it might be angry at that moment.
Why Do Cardinals Lower Their Crests?
The exact reason why cardinals lower their crests is still unknown. Some researchers believe cardinals move their crests to display courtship behavior, aggression, submission, or dominance.
They tend to raise their crests out of aggression, and when upset or bored, they lower their crowns. Some researchers also think there is basically no reason why cardinals lower their crests.
Do All Female Cardinals Have A Crest?
Though the female cardinals lack the beautiful, eyegasmic red colored plumage of male cardinals, they pose an elegant beauty on their own. They have warm buffy tan color over their backs, breasts, and other sides.
Besides, they come with red-orange tinges on their wings, tails, and crests. Yes, the female cardinals also feature crests and red-orange bills like the male cardinals.
Does A Juvenile Cardinal Have A Crest?
Yes, a juvenile cardinal boasts a crest since birth. The baby owns a small amount of black-colored feathers over its head, and when it ages, its crest grows with it and changes its color according to its gender.
If the cardinal is male, he will have a red-colored crest, while the female is primarily pale brown but features reddish tinges on her crest.
Do All Cardinals Have Mohawks?
Technically yes, all cardinals have mohawks. Now, you might be wondering how? Well, some birders call cardinals’ crests mohawk. To them, these birdies sport a stylish mohawk on their heads.
So, if you ever tell such birders about cardinals’ crests, they might not recognize this body part of cardinals.
What Does It Mean When A Cardinal Has No Crest?
It means the cardinal is going through molting. Cardinals lose a whopping amount of feathers during this period. These birds molt in late summer and early fall, losing most of their body plumage, including the crown feathers.
But in winter, their plumage grows back, giving them the most astounding look they have ever had. So, if you witness a cardinal without a crest, you need to understand that it must be undergoing molting or suffering from any disease.
Cardinals are famous for their vibrant feather colors, but their crest captures most bird watchers’ attention. This body part evinces the absolute stunner of cardinals, making birders observe this bird repeatedly for a prolonged period.
However, now you know why cardinals move their crowns based on their emotions. We hope you can answer questions about cardinals’ crests next time without guessing if somebody asks you any questions about their crowns.
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