Lest you be concerned: no, we have not permanently scared away the mama cardinal from the front porch.
That "stick" you see jutting out from the purple flowers is actually her tail feathers. She's a skittish one and flies away if I get remotely close to her.
After several days of thwarted attempts, I decided to pull the rip cord and give you what I got; believe me when I tell you that this is the best picture I could get of her.
I know you were concerned.
Now you can rest easy.