I am always on the look out for the newest biological discovery. I love cryptozoology and I find it fascinating when scientists discover things about animals and nature that seemed improbable or maybe even impossible. The weird, the strange, the oddities of nature. Long story short, I came across an article that inspired my latest piece.
The article was explaining the rare occurence of a hermaphrodite cardinal. Half of the bird is female and the other half is male. When this occurs it is called a bilateral gynandromorph. Gynandromorph comes from the greek words “gyne” (female), “andro” (male) and “morph” (form or shape). There are several species known to have hermaphrodites such as reptiles, crustaceans, and even butterflies! Scientists believe that all birds are capable of producing gynandromorph offspring but it has only been noticed in birds that vary in color between males and females, such as the cardinal.
Mostly cardinals have been spotted perfectly split down the middle with a vibrant red on one side and a calm yellow on the other. When I saw the image of one, taken by a Pennsylvania couple at their backyard feeder, I was amazed by the beauty of it’s plumage. I immediately added this animal oddity to my list and couldn’t wait to get started!
I have always wanted to create a piece based on duality. It was interesting to create two sides that are similar to each other but at the same time exact opposites. The female side is done with circles where as the male side I used a square pattern. The colors are also opposing yet the shadowing and vibrance is the same.
I’m very happy with how the cardinal turned out. I never intended to create as many bird drawings as I have, it just kind of happened. I just love feathers and their patterns and colors! I am naturally drawn to birds so therefore they are naturally drawn by me! See what I did there! 😉 I used Arteza water color pencils and Prismacolor art markers along with a micron pen to get the thin black lines. I can only hope that maybe one day I will see one of these beauty’s with my own two eyes!
Have you ever seen a hermaphrodite cardinal or maybe another species in the wild? The butterflies would be really cool to come across too! Share your story in the comments below. Thanks for stopping by this week! Check back soon as I will discuss the symbolism of having cardinal as a totem!
Stay vibrant, free spirits!
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