(Last Updated On: May 21, 2021)

Fun Facts about Pyrrhuloxia that will help you identify and make better images of this gorgeous bird!

If you thought this was a cardinal, you would be close, but no cigar!  Meet the Pyrrhuloxia (Peer-who-loxia) a terrible name for this beautiful bird! If you speak ancient Greek, then you already know the word describes the shape of these birds faces. 🤔

Don’t be too hard on yourself for thinking the Pyrrhuloxia was a cardinal, they are very closely related. They are so closely related that they even sing the same song! They also share the trait of different feather colors between males and females. The colors between the species are similar, but once you know them both, you can’t miss. Until then, if you the bill looks like it belongs to a parrot, it’s a Pyrrhuloxia!

Use the slider to compare Northern Cardinals and their cousins the Pytthuloxia.

male pyrrhuloxia texas bird photographymale northern cardinal texas bird photography

female northern cardinal texas bird photographyfemale pyrrhuloxia texas bird photography

Most people call them the Desert Cardinal which makes way too much sense for the bird nerds to change the name.

I can’t find a collective noun for the Pyrrhuloxia, and so, of course, I have to create one! Their name is also is a derivative of fire, so I think that blaze is an excellent word to use as a collective noun. A “blaze” of Desert Cardinals!

The Pyrrhuloxia is one of the South Texas specialties that is a virtual lock to be photographed on my Texas Bird Photography Workshop.

Bird Photography Portfolio – Pyrrhuloxia

I have cardinals in my yard and they have long been a favorite, but the Pyrrhuloxia are so exotic, it’s hard not to pick them. You can check out my photos of both “cardinals” in my Bird Photography Galleries.

More Fun Facts?

Are you team Pyrrhuloxia or team Northern Cardinal? Share your thoughts in the comments section!