Territorial Cardinal – Fighting His Reflection

Q: I am at my wits end. A bird has been pecking on my kitchen window every morning and during the day! We chase him away but he returns and pecks at my car mirror.

A:Your cardinal is mistakenly trying to establish a territory as if it were spring. He is enraged and jealous because he sees an interloper standing right there behind that shiny glass window or mirror.

Worse yet, the stranger fights back every time the cardinal gives him the rush. Robins and mockingbirds do the same thing.

The springtime ratio of daylight hours to nighttime hours is what initially causes the territorial urge in birds. This same behavior may be repeated in fall, when the same ratio occurs.

In my experience, the fall bird-banging season is much shorter than in spring. Tape some newspaper onto your window or put a grocery bag over the mirror to cancel the reflection effect. You can remove it in a few weeks.

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