Linda B: I would say my Spark Bird is a Goldfinch. They are not regular customers at my feeders, but as far back as I can remember they always got my attention. I even like them as artwork!

Dawn: I like seeing birds but am not a “birder”. My favorite bird that I’m most fascinated with is the Owl in general with my favorite owl being the white snowy owl, though I’ve never seen one in person.  As far as a “spark” bird that makes me happy to see would be the Red Cardinal as I see them at my feeder year round and the Cardinal is that bright spot on a cold dreary and sometimes snowy winter’s day. To me they cause me to think about stamina, strength and determination, hope and family as I often see both a male and female together. And my other favorite is the pretty blue Robin as they signal that Spring is here.  

Lisa: “Spark Bird” was a new term to me. It took me some time to decide which bird it was that sparked my interest in birds. In my youth, I was a Camp Fire Girl in Salem, Ohio. I learned the names of birds to earn those precious beads for my vest. However, it wasn’t until I moved to Atlanta that I became interested in the Eastern Blue Bird. It was the first bird I bought a book about. Since then, I listen eagerly to any and all information on birds. I have worked to make my yard bird friendly and strived to plant shrubs and trees that provide a healthy, desirable habitat for them. I am now the proud owner of many bird books and enjoy reading about all species of birds around the world. I’m a pretty bird crazy gal, and it all started with the Eastern blue bird. 

Debbie J: My spark bird is Cardinals…  It is common folklore that a visit from a cardinal is a sign from a loved one who has passed away. Of course I usually take this with a grain of salt. However I have two stories to tell that may say otherwise.

I have always had many species of birds in my backyard that came daily. Cardinals only came once in a while. In late January 2019 they started to appear more often. Usually a bright red male would bring his family with him. Sometimes additional Cardinals would come also. Everyday the Cardinals would come like clockwork along with a flurry of other bird species. All the birds would take turns eating at the feeder, splashing in the birdbath and sing from the tree tops all day long. I so enjoyed their presence.

Our “Tuxy” cat became ill in February 2019 with colon cancer. Even tho Tux was an indoor cat he loved to go outside and watch the birds while sitting on our stone wall. On April 03, 2019 Tuxy went outside that morning for the last time and went to cat heaven while in my arms. About one hour later after the vet took him for cremation a strange thing happened. 

I noticed that it was strangely quiet in my backyard with no birds in sight… no singing… no playing… Nothing. Suddenly a bright red male Cardinal appeared all by himself and sat on our wall directly across from our kitchen picture window. He sat there in a stone like pose for almost 2 hours just staring directly into the large window at me. When he left no other birds visited for another 2 hours. Was this a sign from Tuxy?

Then a similar event recently happened when my husband passed away in October 2021. Shortly after I returned home from the hospice facility that afternoon, once again the lone cardinal came and sat on our wall directly across from the large kitchen window. He only stayed a short time that day but returned late the next morning and stayed a while. He did that everyday for 6 months at various times… just like he knew when I would be in the kitchen to see him. Each time he was the only bird around. Coincidence?

You be the judge. This Cardinal sure made a believer out of me!

The gorgeous photo of a cardinal is by George Berberich on Unsplash