25. Missouri. Official state bird: eastern bluebird
Boring, but I don’t know what else would be better.
What it should be: eastern bluebird
26. Montana. Official state bird: western meadowlark
What it should be: McCown’s longspur
27. Nebraska. Official state bird: western meadowlark
What it should be: sandhill crane
28. Nevada. Official state bird: mountain bluebird
Look, Nevada, you’re insane. You should have a bird that also represents what a zany, mixed-up world this is. How about a fat Asian grouse that was introduced by hunters in the 1960s and has managed to hang on in some remote Nevadan mountains?
What it should be: Himalayan snowcock
29. New Hampshire. Official state bird: purple finch
OK, just go with it.
What it should be: purple finch
30. New Jersey. Official state bird: eastern goldfinch
Are you serious? Another outdated name? Come on, Jersey. You’ve got a fine birding reputation, and you’re better than this.
What it should be: seaside sparrow
31. New Mexico. Official state bird: greater roadrunner
What it should be: greater roadrunner
32. New York. Official state bird: eastern bluebird
Another win for the powerful bluebird Lobby.
What it should be: cerulean warbler
33. North Carolina. Official state bird: northern cardinal
More like bore-thern cardinal.
What it should be: Carolina chickadee
34. North Dakota. Official state bird: western meadowlark
Was western meadowlark the official state bird of the entire Louisiana Purchase and they just kept if after becoming states?
What it should be: chestnut-collared longspur
35. Ohio. Official state bird: northern cardinal
Uuggghhhhhhh the wooorrrssssttt.
What it should be: indigo bunting
36. Oklahoma. Official state bird: scissor-tailed flycatcher
Hell yeah! Nailed it!
What it should be: scissor-tailed flycatcher
37. Oregon. Official state bird: western meadowlark
Stop it with the meadowlarks. I’m resisting the temptation for Oregon junco here, in favor of something that would never happen.
What it should be: northern spotted owl
38. Pennsylvania. Official state bird: ruffed grouse
I like it.
What it should be: ruffed grouse
39. Rhode Island. Official state bird: Rhode Island red chicken
Hahaha, Rhode Island you so crazy.
What it should be: bee hummingbird, the smallest bird in the world. Ha ha just kidding! Rhode Island red chicken
40. South Carolina. Official state bird: Carolina wren
OK. Thank you.
What it should be: Carolina wren
41. South Dakota. Official state bird: ring-necked pheasant
An exotic. You’re kidding me. Is your state meal General Tso’s chicken? Is your state hat the sombrero? Is your state anthem the Canadian national anthem?
What it should be: sharp-tailed grouse
42. Tennessee. Official state bird: northern mockingbird
What is it with mockingbirds? I do not understand. They are garbage birds that eat dumpster trash! Is that what you want to identify with, Tennessee?
What it should be: Tennessee warbler
43. Texas. Official state bird: northern mockingbird
Sometimes—after a nice full day, perhaps spent in the company of loved ones—one can forget that the world is a cold, uncaring place full of death and sadness. Thanks, Texas, the birdiest state in the entire country, for reminding me that this civilization we’ve built and work our fingers to the bone trying to perfect is as meaningless as a sand castle in the tide.
44. Utah. Official state bird: California gull
At first I was mad: “You named your official state bird after a bird named for a different state?” But then I learned that California gulls ate a bunch of locusts back in the early Mormon days and saved a bunch of lives, so I’m OK with this. State birds with stories are good state birds.
What it should be: California gull
45. Vermont. Official state bird: hermit thrush
Fine. Thank you for restoring sanity, Vermont.
What it should be: hermit thrush
46. Virginia. Official state bird: northern cardinal
Just when I think I’m out, they suck me right back in. Shut up, Virginia.
What it should be: barred owl
47. Washington. Official state bird: willow goldfinch
What is going on? Nobody can get the goldfinch right!
What it should be: glaucous-winged gull
48. West Virginia. Official state bird: northern cardinal
West Virginia I am so mad at your right now I could explode.
What it should be: Swainson’s warbler
49. Wisconsin. Official state bird: American robin
I just … I can’t.
What it should be: golden-winged warbler
50. Wyoming. Official state bird: western meadowlark
I hate you.
What it should be: greater sage-grouse
Final Thoughts: This has been the most depressing post I have ever put together. Three robins but no blue jay? Seven cardinals but no owls or hawks? Five filthy mockingbirds? This is what we pay taxes for, folks.
This article originally appeared in the Birdist.
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