What Is The State Bird Of Iowa? All Facts Explained

State Bird Of Iowa

Iowa has a mixture of natural lakes, dense woodlands, and wetlands. Like other states, this state also has its official state bird and state animal.

When it comes to the state bird, Iowa has American Goldfinch as its official state bird and it got this status in 1933.

This yellow canary bird stays in this state throughout the year even during the harsh and snowy winters. And In this article, I’ll explain all the facts related to the state bird of Iowa.

Why is the American Goldfinch the state bird of Iowa?

The American Goldfinch was chosen as the state bird of Iowa because of the loyalty of this bird towards this state. This bird spends its entire year in Iowa.

During the wintertime, most of the songbirds fly to the south but this canary stays in Iowa even in harsh and snowy winters.

The Hawkeye state recognized the loyalty of this bird and gave the status of state bird to this bird.

These birds eat allergy-causing weed seeds such as sunflower, dandelion, and evening primrose seeds. These weeds are not harmful to these birds but it helps the gardeners to control their allergies. 

When did Iowa adopt the American Goldfinch as their state bird?

Till 1933, the state of Iowa had no official state bird but on March 22, 1933, the legislature adopted the American Goldfinch as their official state bird. With this, the state shared its official state bird with New Jersey and Washington.

What does the American Goldfinch look like? 

American Goldfinches are yellow birds that can be seen in the whole Iowa state and you can see them afar all year around.

The length of these birds is about 4.25 inches in length while their wingspan ranges from 7.5 to 8.7 inches. The weight of these birds is about 0.39 to 0.79 ounces.

The male goldfinches have a black beak and forehead. The feathers of the female birds are olive-yellow and brown tails and wings.

But in the winter season, the male birds get the same color as the females. The chest and upper area of the male bird appear to be yellow similar to that of female birds.

But the rump of these males appears white. Both of these birds have pale legs. 

How do these birds behave?

During the daytime, the American Goldfinches are busy singing and foraging for food. These birds usually search for food with their mate or in small flocks.

These birds mate for life and sing until they have their children. When their babies are born, the female bird stop singing but her babies can learn to sing at six weeks of age.

They sing a rapid-fire, and high-pitched song that sounds a bit similar to the sound of rat-tat-tat of a machine gun firing. But both the male and female canary must reach maturity before they sing regularly. 

These birds start to learn singing at six weeks of age but they don’t begin performing until the age of nine months. The canaries are a bit similar to humans.

These birds are not taught by their parents for singing but a human can teach them to sing. Even a fully grown canary can be trained in singing if it doesn’t know the same.

These birds can negate the idea of bird-brained behavior and this ability helps them to learn the songs in adulthood and learn from other bird species. 

American Goldfinches can be a great pest but you should not trap a wild canary. Purchasing it from a pet store is recommended as they are bred for living pet life.

You can use bird feeders at your place to draw canaries to your yard. You can offer them sprouted seeds as it is the favorite meal of these birds.

These birds can live between nine to 10 years indoors but they can live up to 16 years outdoors (In Wild). 

Do American Goldfinches form communities?

American Goldfinches usually stay in nuclear families and they mate for life. When a bird forms a pair, the couple starts to build their nest together using milkweed, thistle, and other fibrous plant life to build their home.

These birds can breed up to three-time during their life and a clutch of eggs consist of two to seven eggs per pregnancy.

This means that a single canary couple can produce up to 21 children during their life. These birds usually stay in the same habitat throughout the year.

Once they build their home in a place they stay and raise their family. The nesting period of these birds begins in late June to early July and the incubation period is of 15 days. Once the baby birds reached maturity they leave the nest and fly away. 

What do American Goldfinches eat?

The American Goldfinches usually prefer the weed seeds and they eat the seeds from the materials they build their nests.

It includes thistle seeds and ragweed seeds. If you want to attract these birds to your feeders, you can put nyger and sunflower seeds.

Put the bird feeder near lawn, garden stores, shrubs, or bushes as these birds forage for food in bushes. 


Iowa has American Goldfinches as its state bird and these birds are often known as canaries.

In 1933, the legislation of Iowa adopted this bird as their official state bird because of the loyalty of these canaries. These canaries stay in Iowa throughout the year despite the harsh winters. 

At last, I hope this article might have helped you in some ways. Thank You For Reading!

Related Article You May Like

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top