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updated: 4/3/2014 8:53 AM

2 men trying to change Ind. state bird to nuthatch

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Associated Press

FORT WAYNE, Ind. -- Two northern Indiana men have started a grassroots campaign to change the state bird to the white-breasted nuthatch.

The News-Sentinel reports Tom Johnson and Andy Cullimore of Valparaiso started the campaign March 17 on Facebook. Johnson says the next step will involve collecting signatures on a formal petition asking state officials to change the state bird from the cardinal, selected by the General Assembly in 1933.

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Johnson says they started the effort because Indiana is one of seven states that claim the cardinal as its state bird and they believe this state deserves to have a unique state bird.

The National Audubon Society website says the whit-breasted nuthatch is a sparrow-sized bird with blue-gray feathers above and white underparts usually seen creeping on tree trunks with its head downward.

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