North Dakota State Bird

What Is the State Bird of North Dakota?

The official state bird of North Dakota is the Western Meadowlark. It is one of the most common state birds, and North Dakota shares this distinction with a few other states in the country. There are a lot of different birds in North Dakota, but the Western Meadowlark is one of the most common ones. There are a lot of flat areas in North Dakota, and there are a lot of forests as well. Both of these are great areas for the Western Meadowlark to live and grow, so many people who live in North Dakota know exactly what the bird looks like.

Why Did North Dakota Pick the Western Meadowlark?

Even though there were a lot of options available for an official state bird in North Dakota, the residents of the state decided to go with the Western Meadowlark. Just about everyone had their say, and many of the local schoolchildren were responsible for narrowing down the options as well. Ultimately, the government had to decide what the official state bird is, and it wanted to pick an animal that was emblematic of everything that North Dakota stood for. Given that the Western Meadowlark is one of the most common birds in the local area, it only made sense for North Dakota to pick the Western Meadowlark. Ultimately, that is what happened, and the state government made the official proclamation declaring the Western Meadowlark as the state bird.

When Did North Dakota Pick the Western Meadowlark?

Like many other states, North Dakota decided to pick a state bird during the middle of the 20th century. In 1947, North Dakota went through the process of assessing different options for the official state bird, and it settled on the Western Meadowlark. In addition, it is not the only state to have picked the Western Meadowlark. There are a few other states that also selected the same bird, including Montana, Nebraska, and Kansas.

What Does the Western Meadowlark Look Like?

The Western Meadowlark is one of the most frequently spotted birds in North Dakota. It can be found in suburban communities, in some of the fields of North Dakota, and in a lot of the forests that surround many of the local towns. The dominant color is yellow, and the Western Meadowlark is known for its bright, yellow feathers across the chest. There are also a few tan and brown feathers, typically located on the wings. The Western Meadowlark usually has a band of black feathers on its back. They usually form the shape of a V. Finally, the beak is a dark gray, black, or silver color.

When the Western Meadowlark is fully grown, it is approximately six to ten inches in height. The bird only weighs a few ounces, but the wingspan is approximately 12 to 16 inches. The Western Meadowlark is very active during the day, and it tends to nest underground when the sun goes down.

North Dakota state bird
Western meadowlark
Scientific Name
Sturnella neglecta
Year Became Official