Arizona State Bird

What Is the Arizona State Bird?

The state bird of Arizona is the Cactus Wren, which was adopted as the state bird in the early 20th century. The Cactus Wren is a common sight throughout the southwestern United States, and it is very much a staple of the plant and animal life in the local area. This makes it a natural choice for the state bird of Arizona. The bird is not threatened or endangered, but it is protected by the government. It is also the largest of the North American wrens.

Why Did Arizona Choose the Cactus Wren To Be Its State Bird?

There are a few reasons why Arizona decided to adopt the Cactus Wren as its state bird. First, it is native to the state of Arizona. Most states select birds that have a strong connection to the local area, and the Cactus Wren is one of the most common birds in Arizona.

Furthermore, Arizona wanted to pick a bird that has a pretty song. The Cactus Wren sings a song that is easily recognizable to those who live in the local area, the Cactus Wren's song has been described as a chugging, staccato babble by the Audubon Society of Tucson, so the bird is easy to listen for.

When Did Arizona Select the Cactus Wren To Be Its State Bird?

Arizona joined the country as the 48th state in the early 20th century. About two decades after Arizona became a state, the General Federation of Women's Clubs wanted the state to adopt a state bird, and they wanted it done by 1931, when they would be having a large meeting. The council pushed for the Cactus Wren to be the state bird of Arizona because of how common it is, and the legislature of Arizona decided to pass the measure and adopt the Cactus Wren as the state bird in 1931.

What Does the Cactus Wren Look Like?

The Cactus Wren has a body that blends in well with the surrounding desert landscape and red rocks that have made Arizona so famous. This makes it easier for the bird to hide from its predators. The bird has a dark cream overall appearance with some lighter tan colors mixed in. The bird also has white eye stripes that are easier to see when taking an up-close look.

The Cactus Wren also has a few black and brown spots scattered across its body. The tail and wings have black bars that stand in stark contrast to the rest of the creamy, feather color. The bird is also one of the taller state birds, standing at just under 8 inches in size; however, the wingspan is only about 12 inches, which is relatively average. The bird is also very light, typically weighing about 1.5 ounces. It usually lives to be about 10 years old.

The bird can be frequently spotted building nests near the cactus in Arizona. The nests look like footballs and are made from grasses and plants in the area.

Arizona state bird
Cactus wren
Scientific Name
Campylorhynchus brunneicapillus
Year Became Official