In the spring the female will visit several potential nesting sites in her mate’s territory. She has to spend a lot of time stuck in one spot while incubating her eggs so you may see the female flutter her wings to check out the space or turn around and peek through the branches to check the view and privacy levels.
Cardinals build their nests in a variety of trees and vines that offer protection and concealment. The female first builds a platform using stiff, six inch long twigs. She uses her bill to bend the twigs in several places and weave the twigs around her body. She also presses with her body and feet to force some pieces into place.
Once the nest is complete the female rocks back and forth in the nest to make it more comfortable. She usually likes to build in the morning and the nest construction can take 3 to 6 days. The male cardinal may bring the female some twigs but the female usually builds the nest all alone while the male patrols the area.
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