This bright red bird seems to be a favorite of the American people. The northern cardinal is so well loved that it has been named the official bird of seven U.S. states, which is more than any other species. North Carolina, West Virginia, Virginia, Ohio, Illinois, Indiana and Kentucky all have selected the cardinal to represent their state.
The cardinal is also the mascot of a number of athletic teams. In professional sports, both the St. Louis Cardinals and the Arizona Cardinals sport the red bird. In college athletics, it's the school mascot for the University of Louisville, Illinois State University, Ball State University, Wesleyan University, Lamar University, North Idaho College, Saint John Fisher College, Wheeling Jesuit University, Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences, the Catholic University of America and the State University of New York at Plattsburgh.