Peering out the home window of the Dickinson county Nature Center, I have the right to see birds at the feeders in the avian courtyard.

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One of lock is a excellent yellow color with black color wings, and it is ideal at residence here. That’s because the American goldfinch is the state bird the Iowa.

Did you understand that Iowa has four state symbols? The state bird, the state flower — the wild rose, the state rock — the geode, and the state tree — the oak. Let’s learn a tiny about every of this state symbols.


Iowa’s state bird — American goldfinch

American goldfinches live year-round in Iowa, although your coloring is mute in the wintertime when no breeding actions are occurring. They are typical feeder visitors and have a short, solid beak that is well-designed because that breaking open up seed shells. Lock are well-known to love thistle seed, and also you may even see them perched on a thistle plant in the wild, but they also eat seed from asters, goldenrod and even dandelions.

(Tell apart finches at her feeder)

Goldfinches are noisy birds, singing while perched or if flying, and they will even sing with each other as a group. You might hear “po-TA-to-chip” or “per-CHICK-o-ree” or the male’s breeding call “dear-me, see-me.”

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Iowa’s state flower — wild rose

There space actually different species of wild roses (Rosa spp.), but no official varieties was ever before chosen for the state symbol. However, the wild prairie rose (Rosa setigera) is most regularly used in pictures.

Wild roses prosper in open up woodlands, woodland edges, prairie and also roadside ditches and have pink or pinkish-purple flowers through yellow centers. They bloom indigenous June-September.

With cultivated roses in nurseries, thorns space a huge concern, yet with wild roses increased thorns are much more noticeable ~ above the largest, woody tribe whereas some varieties actually have actually very few thorns.

Wild climbed is a healthy plant because that humans and for wildlife. The bushes are wonderful habitat for little mammals and also birds, and also the leaves, flowers, fruit and also young shoots space all edible. Rose fruit, called rose hips, room a good source of Vitamin C and also are actually offered in wellness food shop for person consumption.


Iowa’s state absent — geode

The indigenous geode method “earth-like” in Latin and also is so named since of its round or ovular shape that looks like a planet. Iowa geodes room usually tiny and have actually a hard, gray external surface. When you crack them open, about 80 percent room lined through crystals that amethyst, gray, lavender or brown. This crystals kind as groundwater, comprise silica, filters with the external shell that mineralized earth and also builds up inside.

Geodes are distinctive rocks the are found in Iowa, Illinois, Missouri and also the western unified States.


Iowa’s state tree — oak

Again, there room many varieties of oak (Quercus spp.) the are aboriginal to Iowa, yet the State legislative branch never decided a specific species for the state tree. Iowa’s aboriginal oaks include:

White oak (Quercus alba) Swamp white oak (Quercus bicolor) Burr oak (Quercus macrocarpa) Red oak (Quercus rubra) pin oak (Quercus palustris) north pin oak (Quercus ellipsoidalis) black oak (Quercus velutina) Chinquapin oak (Quercus muehlenbergii) Dwarf chinquapin oak (Quercus prinoides) Shingle oak (Quercus imbricaria) Blackjack oak (Quercus marilandica) post oak (Quercus stellata)

Burr oaks were once the just trees that were discovered on the vast tallgrass prairie that spanned Iowa, due to the fact that their thick, cork-like bark protected them from prairie fires. They additionally have vast root solution that with deep right into the ground to discover water in times of drought. Burr oaks can easily be determined by your bristled acorn caps and leaves through shallow lobes the are wider at the top and also narrower in ~ the base.

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(What is the fuzzy stuff on mine oak leaves?)

Pin oaks were once indigenous to the bottomlands of southern Iowa, however they were generally planted throughout the state for wildlife habitat and also as shade trees. They have leaves that room narrow v deep lobes the reach practically all the method to the middle vein.

(Use this handy overview to assist identify leaves)

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