A few weeks ago my wife and I noticed that a family of Northern Cardinals (Passeriformes: Cardinalidae: Cardinalis cardinalis) had taken up residence in a barberry bush (Berberis sp., Berberidaceae) next to our front door. It seemed like an odd place to build a nest, with the door opening and closing and people walking by on a regular basis. Every time we went outside the male would fly over to an adjacent spruce tree and the female would hop up to a higher branch in the bush, and both would watch us intently while chirping back and forth. These birds are relatively aggressive and territorial while nesting.
In spite of the disturbances the thick, thorny, and tangled branches of the barberry must have presented an irresistibly well-protected location for raising young. Before long their eggs hatched and I got a decent look at one of the chicks, mohawk and all: