|At Koke'e State Park, Hawaii|
The red-crested cardinal (Paroaria coronata) is a songbird with a prominent red head and crest. Some disagreement exists as to whether this species belongs in the family of the tanagers (Thraupidae) or the buntings (Emberizidae, known in North America as sparrows). Notwithstanding its similar name, this bird is not closely related to the true cardinal family (Cardinalidae).
It is found in northern Argentina, Bolivia, southern Brazil, Paraguay and Uruguay. Its natural habitats are subtropical or tropical dry shrubland and heavily degraded former forest. Among other regions, it is found in southern part of the Pantanal.
It has also been introduced to Hawaii and Puerto Rico. In Brazil, it has been introduced to various places outside its historical range, as in the Tietê Ecological Park in São Paulo, alongside its very similar-looking close relative, the red-cowled cardinal (P. dominicana).
The yellow-billed cardinal (P. capitata) could be easily confused with the red-crested cardinal; both the red-cowled and yellow-billed have a very short crest that is not visible except in excited birds, and in the case of the latter, a black throat, darker upper parts and a bright yellow bill.
- BirdLife International (2012). "Paroaria coronata". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2013.2. International Union for Conservation of Nature. Retrieved 26 November 2013.
- Schulenberg, T.S. (2010). "Red-crested Cardinal (Paroaria coronata), Neotropical Birds Online". Cornell Lab of Ornithology; retrieved from Neotropical Birds Online:. Ithaca, NY.
- Bunting (bird)
- Red-crested cardinal videos on the Internet Bird Collection
- Stamps (for Argentina, Brazil, Uruguay) with range map
- Red-crested cardinal photo gallery VIREO
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