Monday, March 7, 2016

Does Maryland Need a State Duck?

Maryland has a state bird, fish, reptile, fossil shell and dinosaur. Now state Sen. Robert Cassilly is looking to add a duck to the list.

The Harford County Republican is pushing to make the canvasback, a duck with deep ties to the Havre de Grace culture and economy, one of the state’s official symbols to celebrate its contributions to that region of the state.

Mr. Cassilly stressed the importance of the canvasback to the Harford economy Friday during a Senate Education, Health and Environment committee hearing. The region is known for its Decoy and Wildlife Art Festival, its decoy museum and the many businesses centered around hunting and waterfowl.
As ducks go, it's OK. It's pretty, with a nice red head, and a funny sloping bill. It's found in enormous numbers, especially in the upper bay. I guess it's probably good eating. But it's far from the prettiest, and I think the ordinary Bufflehead might be more numerous.
State Sen. Cheryl Kagan, a member of the Senate committee considering the bill, said the legislature needs to focus on serious issues like the budget, not on symbolic gestures with no economic value.

“I voted against the state cat, dinosaur, all of that,” the Montgomery Democrat said, and wondered how many symbols the state needs.

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