Cardinal - West Virginia's State Bird. The cardinal was named the state's official state bird with the adoption of House Resolution 12 on March 7, 1949, which authorized pupils from public schools and civic organizations to name the bird.
Three species of mammals no longer exist in West Virginia: the bison, elk and gray wolf. The last recorded bison in West Virginia was killed near Valley Head, Randolph County in 1825. Elk were reported near the headwaters of the Tygart and Greenbrier rivers as late as 1875, but were gone by 1890. Bounties were paid on wolves in West Virginia through the late 1800s with the last recorded wolf killed in 1900.