Fact-checking

As I’ve been recovering from back surgery—a recovery that is taking a bit longer than I was led to expect—I’ve had plenty of time to check my phone, and more specifically, my news feed. I had to laugh when this item popped up. Seems that USA Today needs to check with an actual birder before choosing photos to accompany their articles!

Note that this is not a yellow bird, rare or otherwise. Even more significantly, this lovely photo is of a House Finch, not a Northern Cardinal.

That would be bad enough, but there’s more:

Here we finally get to see the yellow cardinal (which happens to be male). However, this is a male House Sparrow, definitely not a younger cardinal—or its mate!

These are rather significant mistakes in an article on I topic I know a bit about. It makes me wonder how many mistakes (intentional or otherwise) appear in their articles on other topics!