Here in California the bird I miss seeing more than any other is the Cardinal. Sometimes I think I hear its call, but that’s probably just wishful thinking.
The Cardinal is one of the easiest backyard birds to feed because it likes to eat on flat surfaces. Just scatter some seed on the ground and you might attract a Cardinal. That won’t always work, though. The Cardinal is a skittish bird. It will balance its hunger against its perceived possibility of danger.
It is more likely to eat on the ground in the winter – more hungry. In the Spring, Summer, and Fall you will be more likely to attract it with a platform feeder – a feeder with a flat surface. It will also prefer a platform feeder over the ground in Winter. You will rarely see it feeding on a tube feeder or a feeder where the seeds may be difficult to get at. And most importantly, its favorite food is usually black oil sunflower seeds.
Here’s a video about the Cardinal.