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New Mexico: Land of Enchantment
CAPITAL: Santa Fe
JOINED UNION: January 6, 1912
STATE BIRD: Roadrunner
STATE FLOWER: Yucca
MEANING OF STATE NAME: Named by the Spanish for lands north of the Rio Grande River
1992 POPULATION: 1,581,227
RANK FOR POPULATION: 37
LAND AREA: 121,364 square miles
RANK IN SIZE IN UNION: 5
ECONOMY: Tourism, agriculture, energy research, mining
HISTORY: Indians lived here about 10,000 years ago; more recently the Navajo, Hope, Apache, and Comanche Indians lived in New Mexico and, today, the Navajo have a large reservation in the state. In 1539, Franciscan Marcos de Niza and his black slave Estevan explored for gold in the area. Settlements began in 1598 at San Juan Pueblo and in 1610 at Santa Fe. New Mexico became a province of Mexico in the 1820s and trade along the Santa Fe Trail to Missouri began in 1821. New Mexico was won by the U.S. as a result of the Mexican War. During the Civil War, the Confederacy took much of the area. In the 1870s there were cattle wars. In 1945, Los Alamos was the sight of the first atomic bomb test, right before the weapon was used on Japan. Today, artists have established Santa Fe as a main center of galleries in America and the many Indian pueblos draw tourists as well.
Old Hat to a Bat
CARLSBAD, NEW MEXICO
Radar was an amazing technological breakthrough when it was developed during World War II, but for bats, it was old stuff.
The only basic difference between man's radar and bats' "echolocation" is that radar locates objects by sending out a radio signal and listening for an echo, while bats send out sound waves.
Bats are the only mammals to fly and are enormously widespread and varied. There are 900-plus species of bats -- from the five-foot-wingspan flying fox, to the little bumble bee size "Kitti's hog-nosed bat" of Thailand.
Most bats eat flying insects, some eat fruit, a few fish, and others eat other bats, frogs and rodents. And despite its fearsome name, the vampire bat bites livestock, almost never people.
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