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Wyoming Earth Symbols

Wyoming State Gem

Wyoming’s official gemstone is jade, or nephrite. The discovery of nephrite jade in Wyoming in the 1930s sparked a “jade rush” that lasted for several decades. Jade is also a symbol of Alaska.

Fossil ˆ

Wyoming State FossilTriceratops (left) vanished about 15 million years before Knightia arrived on the scene. Fossil Butte National Monument is in the background. (Fossil Butte (background): By Leaflet, CC BY-SA 4.0 Internationallink.)

A tiny herring with the scientific name Knightia serves as Wyoming’s state fossil. Millions of these fossil fish are scattered across Fossil Butte National Monument.

Wyoming shares its official dinosaur, Triceratops, with neighboring South Dakota. This horned herbivore (plant eater) complements Wyoming’s state mammal, the bison.

Soil ˆ

Wyoming’s unofficial state soil is Forkwood. Forkwood soils were formed by water washing particles of shales, sandstones, and other sediments downslope. The resulting accumulations of particles evolved into very deep, well-drained soils.

Today, Forkwood soils support grasslands and semi-arid scrub. They are sometimes used in agriculture, primarily for hay production.

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