Did you know that the first state in America to name an official "state bird" was the bluegrass state of Kentucky? The state selected the Cardinal in 1926 and thus began a "bird race" between the rest of the country.

Nobody wants to pick last and be stuck with a lame state bird, right? What if all that was left was a Dodo or a spindle-legged stork? So how did Colorado decide upon our state bird, which most residents struggle to identify?

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Colorado's State Bird

Colorado selected the Lark Bunting as our state bird in 1931. Other finalists for state bird included the Robin, Meadowlark, and Bluebird.  By the time Colorado was ready to decide, all three finalists had been claimed by other states.

So on April 29th, 1931, Colorado passed Senate Bill No. 251, electing the Lark Bunting to the office of official state bird. The Lark Bunting was given the nickname "Troubadour of the Plains," and sings two different songs in flight. The bird is the only sparrow that changes its look for winter.

The Colorado Audubon Society

Some historians describe Roy M. Langdon of Colorado's Audubon Society as somewhat obsessed with Colorado electing the Lark Bunting as the state bird. The Denver Library has a great article describing Langdon's push for the bunting found here. It almost seems like Langdon's main reason for loving the bird so much was that male bunting's black-and-white distinction would look spectacular on trademarks and letterhead.

Find Lark Buntings in Colorado

The Lark Bunting loves the grasslands and wetlands of Colorado's eastern plains and can be harder to spot across the state and in the mountains. Look for them at places like the Pawnee National Grasslands and Barr Lake near Denver.

The males also shift from black and white to brownish-gray during the winter, which can confuse bird watchers further. The bird is not a full-time resident of the state only appearing in Colorado from about April to September.

Keep going to learn ten high-flying facts about Colorado's state bird in the gallery below.

10 High Flying Facts About Colorado’s State Bird

Did you know many Coloradans don't know what our state bird looks like? The Lark Bunting migrates through Colorado from April to September. It's been the Centennial State's official bird since the 1930s.

Gallery Credit: Wesley Adams

Scroll Through Some of Colorado's Rarest Birds

The Colorado Bird Records Committee of Colorado Field Ornithologists reports an amazing 514 species of birds can be found in the Centennial State. Scroll through the photos below to see some of the rarest birds you'll encounter in Colorado.

Gallery Credit: Wes Adams

Colorado Was the First State in America To Have These 10 Things

Over the years, the state of Colorado has been first many times. Despite being the 38th state added to the union, Colorado has been first several times when it comes to introducing new things. Scroll through the photos below to see ten different times when Colorado was the first state across the finish line with a new idea.

Gallery Credit: Wesley Adams

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