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State Birds of the US
State Symbols: State Birds

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Wyoming State Bird

Western Meadowlark

State Symbol: Wyoming State Bird

(Sturnella Neglecta)

Adopted February 5, 1927.

The Western Meadowlark, (Sturnella Neglecta,) was adopted as the State Bird on February 5, 1927.

In fact, the Wyoming State Legislature did not designate the "western meadowlark" as the state's official bird but, rather, specified the "meadowlark." Since the western meadowlark is the species of meadowlark found in Wyoming, this this is not an issue.

The western meadowlark is about nine inches long. It has a brown and black back and wings and a bright yellow chest with a black V on it. The meadowlark's colors may be a little duller in winter. It has a long pointed bill.

Wyoming State Bird: Western Meadowlark

State Symbol: Wyoming State Bird

This bird is known for its loud, cheerful chirps. It is about as big as a robin with a bright yellow chest and throat under a black collar. It builds its nest on the ground and lays between three and seven white eggs with purple and brown spots. The eggs only take two weeks to hatch. It can be found in spring and summer along most dirt roads, sitting on fence posts singing to other meadowlarks nearby.

The western meadowlark is about nine inches long. It has a brown and black back and wings and a bright yellow chest with a black V on it. The meadowlark's colors may be a little duller in winter. It has a long pointed bill. The western meadowlark is very similar to the eastern meadowlark. The western meadowlark's yellow color extends a little further onto its cheek. The songs of the two meadowlarks are the easiest way to tell them apart. The song of the western meadowlark is a series of flute-like gurgling notes that go down the scale. The eastern meadowlark's call is a simpler series of whistles.

Characteristics of the Western Meadowlark

  • Length: 8.5 inches
  • Sharply-pointed bill
  • Buff and brown head stripes
  • Yellow underparts with black "v" on breast
  • White flanks with black streaks
  • Brown upperparts with black streaks
  • Brown tail with white outer tail feathers
  • Juvenile and winter plumages somewhat duller
  • Frequents open habitats

Approximately the size of a robin, the meadowlark sports a yellow breast with a black bib over its mottled brown body. These song birds are found from Wisconsin to Texas and westward to the Pacific.

Wyoming Statutes

The law designating the Western meadowlark as the official Wyoming state bird is SECTION 8-3-105 (State bird) of the Wyoming Statutes, Title 8 (General Provisions) Chapter 3 (State Seal, Flag, Flower, Bird and Other Symbols) Section 8-3-105.

Title 8 General Provisions.
Chapter 3 - State Seal, Flag, Flower, Bird and Other Symbols.
SECTION 8-3-105

8-3-105. State bird.

An American icteroid bird (genus Sturnella), the bird commonly known as the meadowlark, is the state bird of Wyoming.

Taxonomic Hierarchy: Western Meadowlark

Kingdom: Animalia - animals
Phylum: Chordata - chordates
    Subphylum: Vertebrata - vertebrates
Class: Aves - birds
Order: Passeriformes - perching birds
Family: Fringillidae - buntings, finches, grosbeaks, old world finches, sparrows
Genus: Sturnella Vieillot, 1816 - meadowlarks
Species: Sturnella neglecta Audubon, 1844 - Pradero occidental, western meadowlark

Official State Birds
US map : Birds & Flowers
State Bird:  Bird selected (by the legislature) as an emblem of a State.
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