Today's image is titled Cardinal and was photographed by Karen Darcy.
Darcy describes the photo: "Searching for food is more challenging when the plants all die off in winter." The bird in question is a male Northern Cardinal (Cardinalis cardinalis), the common North American bird whose bright visibility in the winter months lends to their association with the Christmas holiday. Taking their name from the color of the garments worn by cardinals in the Roman Catholic Church, the birds in hand are regularly used as mascots by a variety of sports teams. While an anthropomorphic badger is the UW-Madison's mascot, the school's primary color is cardinal red, and thus the name is seen regularly in various institutions around town, such as The Daily Cardinal student newspaper and The Cardinal Bar downtown.
There is a larger version of the photo in the gallery at right.
This is the latest entry of Madison Snaps: photos of Madison-area events and locations. The Isthmus group photo pool is the primary source for Madison Snaps, which are published here with the permission of individual contributors. If you are interested in having your photo eligible for Madison Snaps, please respond to the posting on the Flickr group page, or send a message. There is no compensation for Madison Snaps photos, which are © to the respective photographers.