Northern Mockingbird – A State Bird
The Northern Mockingbird (Mimus polyglottos) is the official state bird of five states. It is the only Mockingbird commonly found in North America. This bird is mainly a permanent resident; however, northern residents may fly south during harsh winters.
The Texas legislature designated the Northern Mockingbird the official state bird in 1927 followed by the legislatures of Florida in 1927, Arkansas in 1929, Tennessee in 1933, and Mississippi in 1944 naming the Northern Mockingbird their state bird.
Any Texan will quickly tell you that the Mockingbird has the prettiest song of any bird native to North America, which is perhaps the chief reason the “Mocker” was named the state bird. The Mockingbird’s song is a medley of calls of many other birds, up to 200, as well as the sounds of insects and amphibians. Each imitation is repeated two or three times, then another song is started, all in rapid succession. This bird is a fierce protector of its nest and environment. The Texas legislature noted that the Mockingbird, “…is found in all parts of the state, in winter and in summer, in the city and in the country, on the open prairie and in the woods and hills … is a singer of distinctive type, a fighter for the protection of his home, falling, if need be, in its defense, like any true Texan.