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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.

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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