Mockingbird ~ Mimus polyglottos Intensely territorial, the Mockingbird stands ready to attack any creature that invades his domain, especially fellow Mockingbirds. “Dogfights” involving six or more Mockingbirds bombing on each other are not uncommon. The bird’s continuous imitation of other sounds may be designed to better express individual differences.
Iris ~ Iris pseudacorus There are more than two hundred species of Irises that grow wild, and thousands of hybrids, but all have two common characteristics: sword-shaped leaves and a distinctive flower structure consisting of three usually erect petals, called standards, and three outer petals, or sepals, that hang down from the base of the blossom. The arrangement of these parts is peculiar and their duties unusual. A bee, instead of settling on the petals that arch upward from the flower’s center, uses the broad sepals as a landing field. The sepals curve downward and have honey-guide markings and sometimes golden “beards.” Irises come in a stunning range of colors – hence the name Iris, after the Greek goddess of the rainbow.
From The Wildflowers of the 50 States U.S. stamps issued July 24, 1992: