Meerkats at Houston Zoo

Meerkats at Houston Zoo by Lee

Meerkats at Houston Zoo by Lee

Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power: for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created. (Revelation 4:11 KJV)

I know this blog is about birds, but the “Plus” in the name lets me show other critters. Every since the Meerkats where on the Animal Planet TV series several years back, they have been another favorite of mine. (I have LOTS of favorites) The enclosure for the Meerkats at the Houston Zoo was one of the nicer ones we have seen. They seemed to be right comfortable with their surroundings.

We were able to watch them through a glass wall, which gave great views of them. They were created to blend in with their habitat and they do it quite well. What care the Lord provides for His critters and their protection.

From the Houston Zoo’s Meerkat page.

Meerkats belong to the mongoose family and are also known as slender-tailed mongooses. These animals have a tolerance for venom, which is why they can eat scorpions and venomous snakes.

  • Scientific Name: Suricata suricatta
  • Range: Angola, Botswana, South Africa, and Namibia
  • Status in the Wild: Not Threatened
  • Location in the Zoo: Natural Encounters
  • Cool Animal Fact A group of meerkats is called a “mob” or a “gang.”

Here are most of the photos taken of these cute Meerkats:

All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made. (John 1:3 KJV)


More Vacation Blogs


Lord Help Us!

Northern Cardinal (Cardinalis cardinalis) Male and Female ©Crooks Bridge

Northern Cardinal (Cardinalis cardinalis) Male and Female ©Crooks Bridge

Supreme Court rules 5-4 that same-sex couples can marry in all 50 states

Our Country has just decided to leave God totally out of our country. When a nation turns from God’s Truth, the Lord will no longer bless us like in the past. Shame on our country.

“Behold, I set before you today a blessing and a curse: the blessing, if you obey the commandments of the LORD your God which I command you today; and the curse, if you do not obey the commandments of the LORD your God, but turn aside from the way which I command you today, to go after other gods which you have not known. (Deuteronomy 11:26-28 NKJV)


Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.” So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them. Then God blessed them, and God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it; have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over every living thing that moves on the earth.” (Genesis 1:26-28 NKJV)

Swan Family ©USFWS

Swan Family ©USFWS

For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith to faith; as it is written, “THE JUST SHALL LIVE BY FAITH.” For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who suppress the truth in unrighteousness, because what may be known of God is manifest in them, for God has shown it to them. For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse, because, although they knew God, they did not glorify Him as God, nor were thankful, but became futile in their thoughts, and their foolish hearts were darkened. Professing to be wise, they became fools, and changed the glory of the incorruptible God into an image made like corruptible man—and birds and four-footed animals and creeping things. Therefore God also gave them up to uncleanness, in the lusts of their hearts, to dishonor their bodies among themselves, who exchanged the truth of God for the lie, and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever. Amen. For this reason God gave them up to vile passions. For even their women exchanged the natural use for what is against nature. Likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust for one another, men with men committing what is shameful, and receiving in themselves the penalty of their error which was due. And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a debased mind, to do those things which are not fitting; being filled with all unrighteousness, sexual immorality, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, evil-mindedness; they are whisperers, backbiters, haters of God, violent, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents, undiscerning, untrustworthy, unloving, unforgiving, unmerciful; who, knowing the righteous judgment of God, that those who practice such things are deserving of death, not only do the same but also approve of those who practice them.
(Romans 1:17-32 NKJV)


if My people who are called by My name will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land. (2 Chronicles 7:14 NKJV)

Houston Zoo’s Four-eyed Fish

Four-eyed Fish Houston Zoo 5-6-15 by Lee

Then God said, “Let the waters abound with an abundance of living creatures, and let birds fly above the earth across the face of the firmament of the heavens.” (Genesis 1:20 NKJV)

I tried so hard to get a decent photo of the most amazing fish that I’ve ever heard of. Talk about a fantastic Creator. These fish have Four Eyes (actually pupils), thus they are called the Four-eyed Fish or Cuatro Ojos. They were at the Houston Zoo. (again a chain-link fence was in the way)

The best article found about these comes from Creation Ministries. “One of the strangest fish in the world is Anableps anableps,commonly called the ‘four-eyed fish’ because of the unique configuration of its eyes. These are large and bulging, like those of a frog, and are located on the top of its head so that it swims with its eyes half in and half out of the water.”

Four-eyed Fish ©WikiC

These eyes allow the fish to see insects and danger above the water, but also, they can watch below for food or danger. What a design!

Wikipedia has this diagram and explanation:

Four-eyed Fish diagram ©WikiC

Four-eyed Fish diagram ©WikiC

The Four-eyed fish eye. 1.Underwater retina 2.Lens 3. Air pupil 4. Tissue band 5. Iris 6. Underwater pupil 7. Air retina 8. Optic nerve

“Four-eyed fish have only two eyes, but the eyes are specially adapted for their surface-dwelling lifestyle. The eyes are positioned on the top of the head, and the fish floats at the water surface with only the lower half of each eye underwater. The two halves are divided by a band of tissue and the eye has two pupils, connected by part of the iris. The upper half of the eye is adapted for vision in air, the lower half for vision in water.  The lens of the eye also changes in thickness top to bottom to account for the difference in the refractive indices of air versus water.”

Just had to share these amazing fish. Trust you find these informative also.

Have you not known? Have you not heard? The everlasting God, the LORD, The Creator of the ends of the earth, Neither faints nor is weary. His understanding is unsearchable. (Isaiah 40:28 NKJV)



Birdwatching Along The Way – Vacation – Part 1

Great Crested Flycatcher outside motel in Tallahassee

Great Crested Flycatcher outside motel in Tallahassee

We left home on Sunday afternoon, May 3rd and drove to Tallahassee, Florida. As I normally do, I kept a list of birds as were riding and I turned these into eBird. While traveling 70 mph, I usually don’t see anything except the larger birds, so the numbers are not spectacular.

Here is a summary of that day:

White Ibis 6, Black Vulture 2, Turkey Vulture 4, Red-tailed Hawk 2, Sandhill Crane 1, American Crow 4, Common Grackle 1, Boat-tailed Grackle 2. When we stopped for the night, we spotted a Northern Mockingbird, Northern Cardinal, a Brown Thrasher and Great Crested Flycatcher which I was able to get a photo of. (12 species)

Great Crested Flycatcher outside motel in Tallahassee

Great Crested Flycatcher outside motel in Tallahassee

It took the second photo to finally put the ID together. Flycatchers can be a challenge (to me), but the underside helped me ID this bird.

Not bad for a first day. The second day, we drove to Baton Rouge, Louisiana, which was one of our longest driving days. Our first goal of the vacation was to be in Houston, Texas by Tuesday, May 5th, which is 1,000 miles from home.

I listed these birds with eBird for the 2nd day, May 4th. A total of 14 species – Great Blue Heron 1, Great Egret 1, Cattle Egret 2,Turkey Vulture 6, Osprey 1, Bald Eagle 1, Great Crested Flycatcher 1, American Crow 2, Fish Crow 1, Tree Swallow 1, Barn Swallow 1, Brown Thrasher 1, Common Grackle 2 and 2 Boat-tailed Grackles. Not much for 500 miles of riding.  Most of the interesting birds that day were the ones at the Welcome Center which I wrote about.

See the Birds at the Mississippi Welcome Center

On Tuesday, we had an easier day and decided to stop by the Battleship Texas. It is located in the San Jacinto Battleground State Historic Site. Dan was in the Navy and if there is a Ship Museum we usually visit it. While we were looking around it, as normal for me, if there is a bird nearby, my attention gets diverted. “Birdwatching Adventure” kicks in and I’m off to capture the birds with the camera. The ship will still be there, but birds have a way of moving on.

Here is a list of the birds seen while visiting the Battleship Texas on May 5th. (eBird report): Neotropic Cormorant  2, Brown Pelican  1, Great Egret  1, Black Vulture, Bonaparte’s Gull  1, Laughing Gull  2, Rock Pigeon (Feral Pigeon)  3, Cliff Swallow  10, Northern Mockingbird  1, European Starling  4, House Sparrow  2.

Here are some of those photos of the ship and the birds I tried to photograph.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

We were close to Houston and arrived safely at my niece’s house later that day. Vacation Goal #1 – Met.

I will both lie down in peace, and sleep; For You alone, O LORD, make me dwell in safety. (Psalms 4:8 NKJV)


Some of the other articles that mention our vacation:


Vacation Bible School – 2015

Wednesday VBS2015 (19)

Opening Wednesday – Learning a Song

This year we are using Answers in Genesis’ Camp Kilimanjaro material for our Vacation Bible School. With over 200+ children signed up, we are staying busy. The theme is great and the lessons have been interesting so far.

A Lesson for the younger ones.


Threatning to divide a baby – Solomon’s Wisdom

This year, as I have for several years, many of the photos posted to our VBS 2015 section of Facebook, were taken by me. This means that I have been busy this week. The photos posted to the site are just the tip of the iceberg. It takes time to sort through them and clean them up a tad.

Stephen stopping by for a cookie.

Dan decided not to do photos this year and has become part of the Kitchen Crew. I call them the Cookie Monster Crew. It takes a lot of cookies (2 apiece) to feed 200+ for 5 days. Plus, we have 85 workers stopping by to get their cookies and snacks. (I’d rather walk around and take photos.)

Dan in the Kitchen

All of this said, no work is being done on all the photos from our vacation this week. I did find a bird in one of the posters today. Think I’ll keep it to use on the blog from time to time.

Beware of Wild Animals

Beware of Wild Animals

That Cardinal doesn’t seem too dangerous.

Thanks for stopping by to see what sort of adventure is going on this week. Pray for us as we do the various task we all have to do and especially for those doing the teaching of the lessons. Pray that the children will see the truth in God’s Word and that some may come to know the Lord as their personal saviour.

Wednesday VBS2015 (95)

(Stephen and the Lord are the ones responsible for the beginning of Lee’s Birdwatching Adventures coming into existence. Fifth Blog Anniversary)

Facebook photos of VBS 2015

Gospel Message


Antelope Ground Squirrels at Houston Zoo

Antelope Ground Squirrel at Houston Zoo 5-6-15 by Lee

Antelope Ground Squirrel at Houston Zoo 5-6-15 by Lee

These Antelope Ground Squirrels at the Houston Zoo were just adorable. Never heard of them before, let alone seen any. They were in a building that had birds in it, of course, and they caught my attention. They landscape their displays and enclosures at the Houston Zoo very well. The squirrels had plenty of room to roam around in and they seemed quite content. Could it be because they didn’t need to worry about predators

Antelope Ground Squirrel Sign Houston Zoo 5-6-15 by LeeAccording to this sign, Antelope Ground Squirrel is found in Arizona and New Mexico and use a variety of vocalizations to tell each other which type of predator is approaching. Isn’t their Creator amazing to give them this ability? Let’s go see what else we can find out about these cute little critters:

They need to scratch,

They need to scratch,

Sorry, that was a small joke, but he did scratch just as I took his/her picture.  :)

Antelope Ground Squirrel Houston Zoo 5-6-15 by Lee (1)

About half of their place at the zoo.

They had lots of room to roam.

“Antelope squirrels or antelope ground squirrels of the genus Ammospermophilus are sciurids found in the desert and dry scrub areas of south-western United States and northern Mexico. They are a type of ground squirrel and are able to resist hyperthermia and can survive body temperatures over 40 °C (104 °F).
There are currently four recognised species in the world, with one subspecies:

  • Harris’s antelope squirrel, A. harrisii, found in Arizona, New Mexico, and Sonora in Mexico.
  • The San Joaquin antelope squirrel or Nelson’s antelope squirrel, A. nelsoni, found in the San Joaquin Valley, California.
  • Texas antelope squirrel, A. interpres, found in Texas, New Mexico, and Mexico.
  • The white-tailed antelope squirrel, A. leucurus, found in the southwestern United States and the Baja California peninsula.
  • The subspecies of the Espíritu Santo antelope squirrel, A. insularis, found on Isla Espíritu Santo.

All are somewhat similar in appearance and behavior. They are around 14–17 centimetres (5.5–6.7 in) long with a 6–10 centimetres (2.4–3.9 in) tail, and weigh 110–150 grams (3.9–5.3 oz). The tail is somewhat flattened. They have a single white stripe on both flanks and none on the face. They live in burrows, which they dig for themselves. They are diurnal, and do not hibernate (though they become less active during the winter), so they are fairly easily seen.” (Wikipedia)

Antelope Ground Squirrel Houston Zoo 5-6-15 by Lee (2)

This one looks like a youngster, so they are following the Lord’s command to fill the earth:

Bring forth with thee every living thing that is with thee, of all flesh, both of fowl, and of cattle, and of every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth; that they may breed abundantly in the earth, and be fruitful, and multiply upon the earth. (Genesis 8:17 KJV)

Antelope Ground Squirrel by Lee

Antelope Ground Squirrel by Lee

“Antelope squirrels are commonly found in dry, shrubby areas of the southern United States into Mexico. These areas are sandy with rocky areas that provide soil that can be burrowed into for shelter and to escape the heat of the day. The temperatures in these regions can exceed 37.8 °C (100.0 °F) during the day and require special adaptations by the ground squirrels to survive. During the night, temperatures in these desert and dry areas may dip below freezing which again requires adaptations to survive. There is very limited free-standing water supply. These regions often suffer from long bouts of drought.” (Wikipedia) Could it just be that again their Creator created them for this big swing in temperature?

Here are all the photos taken of this adorable cute little critters:

I know these aren’t birds, but I am sure there are some birds out there that know all about them.


Beauty of Pollination Video

Another friend sent this video. It is worth watching. Amazing photography. The cactus flower part was very interesting considering we saw so many of them on our recent trip.

Cactus Flower - Arizona Living Desert Museum by Lee

Cactus Flower – Arizona Living Desert Museum by Lee

From the e-mail:

Take just 4 1/2 minutes of your time to WATCH this…..It is worth every moment…..
Then ask yourself “How do atheists explain these wonderful happenings ? “
Be sure to watch this on the largest computer screen you have (HD if possible)
And have your sound turned on.
The hummingbird doing rolls chasing a bee is not to be missed.
Be sure and watch closely (around 2 min 40 sec) and check out the baby bat under its mother. Unreal.
If you never knew what goes on in the garden when you aren’t paying attention, watch this – some of the finest photography you will ever see.

Wordless Birds


Fruit Fly with wings of beauty ©©

Fruit Fly with wings of beauty ©©


“For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse.” (Romans 1:20)

When most people look at a photo of the Goniurellia tridens fruit fly, they think it must have been created by a talented Photoshop artist. No, this fly with images of ant-like insects on its wings is no accident of nature. The images were put there by a Master Designer.

This is the photo that appeared with the story in The National. Dr. Brigitte Howarth, the fly specialist at Zayed University in the UAE who first discovered G tridens, said that the image on the wing is absolutely perfect. She adds that a closer examination of the transparent wings of Goniurellia tridens reveals a piece of evolutionary art. Each wing carries a precisely detailed image of an ant-like insect, complete with six legs, two antennae, a head, thorax and tapered abdomen. When threatened, the fly flashes its wings to give the appearance of ants walking back and forth. This confuses the predator, allowing the fly to escape.

As expected, the story and pictures of G tridens were soon flying all over the Internet. Evolutionists rejoiced, claiming that the fruit fly was a beautiful example of natural selection. But we have to point out that there is no evidence whatsoever to support that claim. As usual, evolutionists simply assume that evolution is true. What they fail to do is show how those images of ants got on the fly’s wings.

Creationists don’t need to provide a step-by-step explanation of how these extraordinary wings developed. The fact is, the design is in their genes! God designed them that way!

Heavenly Father, when I look at the things You have created, I see what unbelievers are unable to see. Open their eyes so they might see that You are the designer who alone has the power to save them from their sins. Amen.

Fruit fly with the wings of beauty“, A. Zacharias, The National, 6/28/13. Photo: This is the photo that appeared with the story in The National.

©Creation Moments 2015

What an amazing design from the Lord. One article even show some with spider-like images on their wings. In that case, they cause the attacking spider to stop and start displaying. This gives the spider’s location away, allowing the Fruit Fly to escape. The Lord even protects the littlest of things. What a Creator.





Adelie Penguin (Pygoscelis adeliae) by Daves BirdingPix

Adelie Penguin (Pygoscelis adeliae) by Daves BirdingPix


“Who being the brightness of his glory, and the express image of his person, and upholding all things by the word of his power, when he had by himself purged our sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high;” (Hebrews 1:3)

Have you ever gone outside on a bright, sunny day and been almost blinded by the light? Then imagine what it must be like for penguins to go about their lives with the intense glare of polar sunlight reflecting off a snowy or watery landscape.

Penguins, of course, can’t slip on a pair of sunglasses, but they don’t need to. These marvelous birds have an external eye fluid that filters out blue and ultraviolet wavelengths from the solar spectrum. This gives them clear vision while protecting their eyes from harm. As you might have guessed, eagles, falcons, hawks and other birds of prey also have this fluid.

Inspired by these birds, scientists have been able to develop an orange-colored dye and filter that duplicates the penguin’s retinal fluid. The orange dye has been used to produce orange-tinted sunglasses which provide improved vision in bright sunlight and on foggy days.

According to Donald DeYoung’s book Discovery of Design, many welders now use orange-colored masks that are safer and more transparent than the old-style dark masks that made it difficult for them to see. There is also the hope that orange-tinted glasses may someday help patients suffering from visual loss due to cataracts or macular degeneration.

When engineers and designers look at nature to design new products and product improvements, they are looking at intelligent designs, not the products of chance and billions of years. The “sunglasses” worn by penguins were designed by their Creator!

Heavenly Father, I am filled with gratitude that You have given me not only eyes to see the world around me but spiritual eyes that can see the truths in Your Word! Amen.

“Penguin Eye – Sunglasses”, Discovery of Design, D. DeYoung and D. Hobbs, pp. 112-113, Master Books, Second Printing, 2012. Photo: Courtesy of Flip619. Licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license.

(Used with permission of Creation Moments)

Lee’s Addition:

Wisdom is in the sight of him who has understanding, But the eyes of a fool are on the ends of the earth. (Pro 17:24)

It continues to amaze me that men keep discovering so many useful things in the design of the critters that the Lord has created, yet refuse to honor or acknowledge Him. That eye protection is just another example of the Lord’s love and care of His Creation.


Creation Moments

More Interesting Things





FEATHERED DINOSAURS from Creation Moments

Changyuraptor yangi (aka feathered dinosaur)©WikiC

Changyuraptor yangi (aka feathered dinosaur)©WikiC


“As birds flying, so will the LORD of hosts defend Jerusalem; defending also he will deliver it; and passing over he will preserve it.” Isaiah 31:5

A new species of dinosaur has been found. Scientists are calling Changyuraptor yangi the biggest feathered dinosaur ever discovered. Here at Creation Moments, however, we’re calling it a feathered bird. Dinosaur-to-bird evolution is nothing more than a flight of fancy.

Changyuraptor yangi (aka feathered dinosaur) ©Stephanie Abramowicz

Changyuraptor yangi (aka feathered dinosaur) ©Stephanie Abramowicz

Naturally, USA Today, BBC News and many other news outlets are calling it a four-winged dinosaur. Changyuraptor yangi, they say, is a new species of dinosaur that offers “clues to the origin of flight – and the transition from feathered dinosaurs to birds.” Research scientists also say that “the new fossil possesses the longest known feathers for any non-avian dinosaur.”

Non-avian? No, we’re still calling them birds, and here’s why. For one thing, dinosaurs and other reptiles have scales, which are folds in their skin. Birds, on the other hand, have feathers which grow out of follicles. Scales and feathers are completely different. No known fossils, in fact, provide evidence of a transition from scales to feathers.

Furthermore, for a dinosaur to evolve into a bird, it would need to develop hollow bones, and it would need to gain powerful flight muscles and develop a new heart with four chambers rather than three.

So, too, do we need a new heart to understand the things of God. We don’t evolve our old heart into a new one. Our new heart comes to us through the work of the Holy Spirit.

Thank You, Father, for sending the Holy Spirit so we can have a close and enduring relationship with You! Amen.

Scientists discover largest four-winged dinosaur to date“, USA Today, 7/15/14. “Four-winged dinosaur is ‘biggest ever‘”, BBC News Science & Environment, 7/16/14. “A new raptorial dinosaur with exceptionally long feathering provides insights into dromaeosaurid flight performance,” Nature Communications, 7/15/14. Illustration: Changyuraptor yangi. Courtesy of Stephanie Abramowicz, Dinosaur Institute, NHM. Used for educational purposes under U.S. fair use doctrine.

Used with permission from Creation Moments©2015

Lee’s Addition:

Actually, there are several verses in Scripture that mention a creature with four wings. Ezekiel 1:6&8: 10:21 and this verse in Daniel 7:6 says:

“After this I looked, and there was another, like a leopard, which had on its back four wings of a bird. The beast also had four heads, and dominion was given to it. (Daniel 7:6 NKJV)

Flying with four wings seems to be possible.

Now for some other rebuttal  articles from Christian Creation sources:


Falling Plates

The World’s Ugliest Animal – Creation Moment

Blobfish ©Simon Elgood

Blobfish ©Simon Elgood

Now here is an interesting and “ugly” fish. This was shared by Creation Moments.

For in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: wherefore the LORD blessed the sabbath day, and hallowed it. (Exodus 20:11 KJV)

Published on Apr 22, 2015

When this fish is taken out of the water, its face almost looks like a very sad person. In 2013 it was voted the “World’s Ugliest Animal”. What is this creature that was adopted as the mascot of the Ugly Animal Preservation Society? It’s the appropriately named blobfish.
Photos of the ugly blobfish have been making the rounds on the Internet. And yet, even the blobfish has beauty when you consider that it was designed to function perfectly in its environment.

Blobfish inhabit the deep waters off the coasts of Australia, Tasmania and New Zealand. If you wanted to see one in its natural habitat, you would have to dive to a depth of between 2,000 and 3,900 feet where the pressure is several dozen times higher than at sea level. The pressure is no problem for the blobfish, though. Its jelly-like body is slightly less dense than water, allowing it to float effortlessly just above the sea floor.
Blobfish don’t have much muscle for swimming, but they don’t need it. They simply swallow edible matter that floats into their mouth. Sadly, they are an endangered species because of fishing trawlers dragging their nets on the seafloor.

Yes, the blobfish is far from attractive. But it serves as a reminder that sinful human beings are unattractive in the sight of God. And yet, while we were still sinners, God sent His Son to die for us and to exchange His righteousness for our sins, making us acceptable in God’s sight. What a Savior!

Father, thank You for sending Your Holy Spirit to reveal the ugliness brought about by sin. Thank You also for sending Your Son to remove my sin and make me righteous in Your sight. Amen.



Plus – Melipona Bee Defies Evolution

Melipona Bee ©WikiC

Melipona Bee ©WikiC

For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him: And he is before all things, and by him all things consist. (Colossians 1:16-17 KJV)

While reading an article from Sage Brush’s “The Vine Vigil” he included this video from exploration films:

To find out more about this relationship between bees and the vanilla bean plus other videos, go to:

God’s Creation – Vanilla Beans and Melipona Bees

Let them praise the name of the LORD: for he commanded, and they were created. (Psalms 148:5 KJV)


Just realized this little jewel has been written about before, but Sage Brush’s article is very interesting.