This got me to wondering about California's other state . . . ummm, what would these be called? Attributes? I'm sure there's a list out there of them all, if only I knew what to search for. Instead, I can search individually, off the top of my head. Like, California State Reptile: the desert tortoise, Gopherus agassizii, adopted in 1972. That makes sense (though I would have voted for the horned toad, but never mind: the desert tortoise is a perfectly awesome reptile too). And the State Amphibian: the California red-legged frog, Rana draytonii, adopted in 2014.
Ah, and that last search netted me what I was hoping for: a list of "California State Symbols, Songs, and Emblems" (which has not yet been updated to include the new dino). Wikipedia, it turns out, also has a list. Most of the state symbol designations may be found in sections 420–429.8 of the California Government Code. This is serious business.
Here are a few more plants and animals that California has claimed as unique or special to itself. Oh, and a few foods and minerals as well. And my favorite fossil (largely, I confess, because of its smily name), to keep the new dino company. I love lists!
- Animal: California grizzly bear (as seen on our flag, if no longer—not since 1922—on our lands), Ursus californicus (designated 1953)
- Marine mammal: California gray whale, Eschrichtius robustus (1975)
- Marine reptile: Pacific leatherback sea turtle, Dermochelys coriacea (2015)
- Freshwater fish: California golden trout, Oncorhyncus mykiss aguabonita (1947)
- Marine fish: Garibaldi, Hypsypops rubicundus (1995)
- Bird: California valley quail, Lophortyx californica (1931)
- Flower: California poppy, Eschscholzia californica (1903)
- Grass: Purple needlegrass, Nassella pulchra (2004)
- Lichen: Lace lichen, Ramalina menziesii (2015)
- Fruit: Avocado, Persea americana (2013)
- Grain: Rice (2013)
- Nut: Almond (2013)
- Vegetable: Artichoke, Cynara cardunculus var. scolymus (2013)
- Mineral: Gold (1965)
- Rock: Serpentine (1965)
- Gemstone: Benitoite (1985)
- Soil: San Joaquin (1997)
|Benitoite, from our neighbor |
San Benito County: gorgeous!
- Fossil: Saber-toothed cat, Smilodon californicus (1973)
And there you have it. Meanwhile, while doing my research, I noticed that Indiana is in the process of designating a state language. Yeah, you can guess that one as well. So unnecessary . . .