Peregrine Falcon on Idaho quarter
Kempthorne, now the secretary of the U.S. Department of the Interior, chose the falcon "to honor the role played by an Idaho raptor recovery center in helping save the birds from extinction." (Click on the image to see a larger version.)
The facility, World Center for Birds of Prey, stems from The Peregrine Fund. The center's staff captive-bred more than 4,000 falcons and released many into the wild. The species no longer appears on the federal endangered species list.
Idaho's state-quarter design isn't the only one to feature a wild bird. Naturally, the governor of South Carolina chose a design with a Carolina Wren for the quarter's release in 2000.
Later, the governor of Louisiana chose artwork with a generic pelican (or is a Brown?) for the Pelican State's quarter, which appeared in 2002.
The following year, the coin from Arkansas -- the Natural State -- featured a Mallard.
The Golden State's quarter appeared in 2005 and featured a California Condor soaring above Yosemite.
The 2008 releases include Oklahoma, New Mexico, Arizona, Alaska and Hawaii. What are the chances that we'll see birds on more state quarters?
You can purchase state quarters directly from the U.S. Mint.
Peregrine Falcon courtesy of U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service