Minnesota State Flower and State Bird
Common Loon ~ Gavia immer
The far-carrying cry of the Loon sounds like the hollow laughter of a hysterical woman, its spine-tingling call heightened by the loneliness of the lake, and the echo from the silent north woods. Yet, the Loon is not really a mysterious and ghostly bird. In fact, he is one of the more wily and skillful swimmers in the bird kingdom. While submerged underwater, the Loon can almost fly; it uses its wings together with its feet to overtake the large fish.
Showy Lady Slipper ~ Cypripedium reginae
Through a technical error, the first Minnesota state flower, Cypripedium calceolus, adopted by the 1893 legislature, did not grow in Minnesota. So in 1902 the legislature adopted the Showy Lady Slipper. It has two common names, both correct, the Showy Lady Slipper and the Pink and White Lady Slipper. Often, it is incorrectly called the Moccasin flower, which is a purplish, stemless Lady Slipper. Today, the state flower is quite rare even though a law was passed in 1925 prohibiting its picking. The several species are among the largely tropical Orchid family. One of the Slipper's petals is enlarged to form a swollen mauve-pink pouch, and the rest of the flower is a dazzling white.
From The Wildflowers of the 50 States U.S. stamps issued July 24, 1992: