Jimmy Tucker with Jtucker Photography captured stunning images of this rare bird. For Tucker, he didn't mind waiting four-and-a-half hours on someone's porch for a glimpse of a one-in-a-million yellow cardinal.
Researchers say the bird has a rare genetic mutation. Yellow Cardinal's are missing a usual enzyme that converts the yellow pigments in food they eat to red pigments.
"The birding world's newest celebrity, a male cardinal named Yellow Saffron by the owner of the Kingston, Tennessee, home whose yard he likes to frequent, is one of just a handful of xanthochromic Northern Cardinals identified in the United States. Fortunately for us, Yellow Saffron appears fond of his rural Tennessee stomping grounds."
Experts also told Southern Living,
"I would estimate that in any given year there are two or three yellow cardinals at backyard feeding stations somewhere in the U.S. or Canada," Auburn University biology professor Geoffrey Hill explained to AL.com last year. "There are probably a million bird feeding stations in that area so very, very roughly, yellow cardinals are a one in a million mutation."
Have you ever seen a yellow cardinal or how often do you see red cardinals in your yard? Please leave us a comment below!
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