Here’s a great educational mini-lesson for you and the kids before your Indian Rocks Beach, Florida vacation. Ask them to give their best answers to these questions about the state of Florida before you tell them the correct answers. They’ll learn a little history, geography, science, and social studies all in one fun Q&A. It’s also a great way to pass the time on your beach vacation road trip, or while you’re sitting around the airport waiting to board your flight, or as part of a family game night in your Indian Rocks Beach rental.
How many of these Florida state symbols and bits of trivia do you know? Find out here!
What is the State Nickname?
The Sunshine State
Did you get this one right? It’s a pretty well-known one and for good reason! Floridians and visitors alike love the extensive amount of sunny days. “The Sunshine State” nickname was officially adopted by the Florida legislature in 1970. Another nickname for Florida is “The Peninsula State”.
What does the State Flag look like?
Red diagonal bars, white background, State Seal in the center
This was a tough one! The current design of Florida’s state flag was adopted in 1900 when Florida voters ratified a constitutional amendment based on an 1899 joint resolution of the state legislature to add diagonal red bars, in the form of a St. Andrew’s cross, to the flag.
What is the State Shell?
The horse conch (Pleuroploca gigantea), also known as the giant band shell, has been Florida’s official state shell since 1969. It’s native to the marine waters around Florida and can grow to a length of 24 inches. Young horse conchs have orange-colored shells; adults have orange apertures.
What is the State Animal?
The most elusive and endangered of all Florida’s symbols is its state animal, the panther (Felis concolor coryi). The Florida Panther is a large, long-tailed, pale brown cat that grows to six feet or longer. Its habitat is usually the same as that of the white-tailed deer, which is its primary diet.
What is the State Bird?
The common mockingbird (Mimus polyglottos) is an excellent songbird and mimic. Mockingbirds are usually about 10 inches in length, with a 15-inch wingspan, grayish upper portions, white undersides, and white patches on the tail and wings. Their song has a pleasant lilting sound and can be both varied and repetitive.
What is the State Flower?
The blossom of the orange tree (Citrus sinensis) is one of the most fragrant flowers in Florida. Millions of these white flowers perfume the atmosphere throughout central and south Florida during orange blossom time. The orange blossom was selected as the state flower by the 1909 legislature.
What is the State Tree?
The sabal palm (Sabal palmetto) is also known as the cabbage palm. It grows in almost any soil and has many uses including food, medicine, and landscaping. The 1953 Florida legislature designated the sabal palm as the state tree, and the 1970 legislature mandated that the sabal palm replace the cocoa palm on the state seal.
What is the State Beverage?
Nope, not a margarita! During the Second World War, scientists invented a process for making concentrated orange juice. Soon, a frozen concentrate was developed that transformed orange juice production into a multi-billion-dollar industry. In 1967 the Florida legislature designated orange juice as the official state beverage.
What is the State Marine Mammal?
The manatee (Trichechus manatus), also called a sea cow, is a gray, waterplant-eating, gentle giant that reaches eight to fourteen feet in length and can weigh more than a ton. It was designated the state marine mammal in 1975. Read more about where you can spot them during your Indian Rocks Beach vacation here.
What is the State Saltwater Mammal?
The terms porpoise and dolphin are sometimes erroneously used interchangeably. Usually in Florida both names refer to the Bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncates), the species commonly found along Florida’s Atlantic and Gulf coasts. (True porpoises are a different saltwater mammal and are not commonly found in Florida waters.) You can learn more about dolphins and their high level of intelligence here.
Well, how did everyone do? Did you learn something new? We sure hope so. If you’re interested in learning more about these and other Florida State Symbols, head on over to the Florida Department of State website for more fun facts and information.
Ready to learn more local florida trivia?
Check out our previous blog post entitled 10 Things You May Not Know About Indian Rocks Beach, Florida. ⤵