Nature gets up to some fascinating things without our intervention! The blog Why Evolution is True recently shared these amazing photographs of a wild gynandromorph cardinal.
For those who don’t know them, cardinals (Cardinalis cardinalis) are a North American bird; the males are a bright, vivid red, while the females are a more muted grayish-brown color, interspersed with red. A gynandromorph, meanwhile, is an organism that has both male and female characteristics—in this case, male coloring on its left side and female coloring on its right.
The photos were sent into them by Brian Peer, who observed the bird for several successive years in Rock Island, IL. He says: “I was able to observe it on several occasions, and noticed that it didn’t associate with other cardinals, nor did I hear it produce any vocalizations.”
Photo Credit: Brian Peer, via Why Evolution Is True
See one more photo on the next page.