Sunday Inspiration – Crows and Jays

Florida Scrub Jay (Aphelocoma coerulescens) by Dan

Florida Scrub Jay (Aphelocoma coerulescens) by Dan

The Corvidae Family has 143 species, of which many are known to people around the world. A member of this family, the Raven is a well recognized Bird of the Bible. On our recent vacation, in Arizona we were able to see a wild Common Raven and a Stellar’s Jay for the first time. Was able to add these to my Life List of Birds on eBird.

American Crow (Corvus brachyrhynchos) Wild SD Zoo Day by Lee

American Crow (Corvus brachyrhynchos) Wild SD Zoo Day by Lee

Steller's Jay (Cyanocitta stelleri) by Lee at Desert Museum AZ

Steller’s Jay (Cyanocitta stelleri) by Lee at Desert Museum AZ

The Corvidae Family not only has Crows, Ravens, and Jays, but the family also hosts; the Choughs, Treepies, Magpies, Bushcrow, Nutcrackers, Jackdaws, and the Rook.

“They are considered the most intelligent of the birds, and among the most intelligent of all animals, having demonstrated self-awareness in mirror tests (European magpies) and tool-making ability (crows, rooks)—skills until recently regarded as solely the province of humans and a few other higher mammals. Their total brain-to-body mass ratio is equal to that of great apes and cetaceans, and only slightly lower than in humans.

They are medium to large in size, with strong feet and bills, rictal bristles, and a single moult each year (most passerines moult twice). Corvids are found worldwide except for the tip of South America and the polar ice caps. The majority of the species are found in tropical South and Central America, southern Asia and Eurasia, with fewer than 10 species each in Africa and Australasia, and Australia.” (Wikipedia)

Could this intelligent family of created birds from the Creator’s Hand be the reason the Raven was chosen by Noah?

And it came to pass at the end of forty days, that Noah opened the window of the ark which he had made: And he sent forth a raven, which went forth to and fro, until the waters were dried up from off the earth. (Genesis 8:6-7 KJV)

Enjoy these beautiful birds from their Creator:

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“Peace Medley” ~ by Faith Baptist Choir

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Sunday Inspirations

Birds of the Bible – Ravens

Corvidae – Crows, Jays Family

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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.

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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

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Sunday Inspiration – Fantails

Rufous Fantail (Rhipidura rufifrons) by Ian

Rufous Fantail by Ian

Thou shalt fan them, and the wind shall carry them away, and the whirlwind shall scatter them: and thou shalt rejoice in the LORD, and shalt glory in the Holy One of Israel. (Isaiah 41:16 KJV)

This week’s Inspiration comes from the Rhipiduridae – Fantails Family. You can see by Ian Montgomery’s photo above where their name came from. This family of birds has 50 species. All but three are Fantails. The other three are the Willie Wagtail, Silktail, and the Pygmy Drongo.

Fantails are small insectivorous birds of Australasia, Southeast Asia and the Indian subcontinent belonging to the genus Rhipidura in the family Rhipiduridae. Most of the species are about 15 to 18 cm long, specialist aerial feeders, and named as “fantails”, but the Australian willie wagtail, is a little larger, and though still an expert hunter of insects on the wing, concentrates equally on terrestrial prey.

Willie Wagtail (Rhipidura leucophrys) on Wallaby by Ian Montgomery

Willie Wagtail (Rhipidura leucophrys) on Wallaby by Ian

The willie (or willy) wagtail (Rhipidura leucophrys) is a passerine bird native to Australia, New Guinea, the Solomon Islands, the Bismarck Archipelago, and Eastern Indonesia. It is a common and familiar bird throughout much of its range, living in most habitats apart from thick forest. Measuring 19–21.5 cm (7 128 12 in) in length, the willie wagtail is contrastingly coloured with almost entirely black upperparts and white underparts; the male and female have similar plumage.

Silktail (Lamprolia victoriae) ©WikiC

Silktail (Lamprolia victoriae) ©WikiC

The silktail (Lamprolia victoriae) is a species of bird endemic to Fiji. It is the only member of the genus Lamprolia. This beautiful bird looks superficially like a diminutive bird of paradise but it is actually closely related to the fantails.

The pygmy drongo or Papuan drongo (Chaetorhynchus papuensis) is a species of bird endemic to the island of New Guinea. It is the only species in the genus Chaetorhynchus. The species was long placed within the drongo family Dicruridae, but it differs from others in that family in having twelve rectrices instead of ten. Molecular analysis also supports moving the species out from the drongo family, instead placing it as a sister species to the Silktail of Fiji, and both those species in the fantail family Rhipiduridae. Some authorities reference the bird as the pygmy drongo-fantail. (Information from Wikipedia)

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For which cause I remind you to fan into flame the gift of God which is in you through the laying on of my hands. (2 Timothy 1:6 LITV)

“So Send I You” – Men’s Quartet – Faith Baptist

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A FLY WITH ANTS ON ITS WINGS – (Re-post)

Fruit Fly with wings of beauty ©©

Fruit Fly with wings of beauty ©©

A FLY WITH ANTS ON ITS WINGS

“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!

Prayer:
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.

Notes:
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.

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Sunday Inspiration – Figbirds, Orioles and Drongos

Today we have the Figbirds, Orioles and Drongo which reside in two more Passerine families. The Pitohuis are included and are members in the Oriolidae – Figbirds, Orioles Family.

Whoso keepeth the fig tree shall eat the fruit thereof: so he that waiteth on his master shall be honoured. (Proverbs 27:18 KJV)

Black-naped Oriole LPZoo by Lee

Black-naped Oriole Lowry Park Zoo by Lee

The Old World Orioles (Oriolidae – Figbirds, Orioles) are an Old World family of passerine birds that has 38 members. The orioles and figbirds are medium-sized passerines, around 20–30 cm in length, with the females only slightly smaller than the males. The beak is slightly curved and hooked, and, except in the figbirds, as long again as the head. The plumage of most species is bright and showy, although the females often have duller plumage than the males do. The plumage of many Australasian orioles mimics that of friarbirds (a genus of large honeyeaters), probably to reduce aggression against the smaller orioles. The family is distributed across Africa, Europe, Asia, and Australia. The few temperate nesting species are migratory, and some tropical species also show seasonal movements. Orioles are arboreal and tend to feed in the canopy.

Spangled Drongo (Dicrurus bracteatus) ©WikiC

Spangled Drongo (Dicrurus bracteatus) ©WikiC

The Dicruridae – Drongos has 25 species. These insectivorous birds are usually found in open forests or bush. Most are black or dark grey in colour, sometimes with metallic tints. They have long forked tails; some Asian species have elaborate tail decorations. They have short legs and sit very upright whilst perched, like a shrike. They flycatch or take prey from the ground. Some drongos, especially the greater racket-tailed drongo, are noted for their ability to mimic other birds and even mammals.

Two to four eggs are laid in a nest high in a tree. Despite their small size, they are aggressive and fearless, and will attack much larger species if their nest or young are threatened.

The word drongo is used in Australia as a mild form of insult tantamount to the term “idiot”. This usage derives from an Australian racehorse of the same name (apparently after the spangled drongo, Dicrurus bracteatus) in the 1920s that never won despite many starts. (Info from Wikipedia)

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Jesus answered and said unto them, Verily I say unto you, If ye have faith, and doubt not, ye shall not only do this which is done to the fig tree, but also if ye shall say unto this mountain, Be thou removed, and be thou cast into the sea; it shall be done. And all things, whatsoever ye shall ask in prayer, believing, ye shall receive. (Matthew 21:21-22 KJV)

Listen to The Hyssongs play and sing as you watch these two beautifully created families of birds:

“He Touched Me ” ~ ©The Hyssongs

Sunday Inspirations

Birds of the World

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Pastor Jerry Smith – Testimony

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Sunday Inspiration – Shrikes and Vireos

Loggerhead Shrike (Lanius ludovicianus) by ©Wiki

Loggerhead Shrike (Lanius ludovicianus) by ©Wiki

Look at the birds of the air, for they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? (Matthew 6:26 NKJV)

Shrikes are passerine birds of the family Laniidae. The family is composed of thirty-three species in three genera. The family name, and that of the largest genus, Lanius, is derived from the Latin word for “butcher”, and some shrikes are also known as “butcher birds” because of their feeding habits. They are fairly closely related to the bush-shrike family Malaconotidae.

Most shrike species have a Eurasian and African distribution, with just two breeding in North America (the loggerhead and great grey shrikes). There are no members of this family in South America or Australia, although one species reaches New Guinea. The shrikes vary in the extent of their ranges, with some species like the great grey shrike ranging across the northern hemisphere to the Newton’s fiscal which is restricted to the island of São Tomé. They inhabit open habitats, especially steppe and savannah. A few species of shrike are forest dwellers, seldom occurring in open habitats. Some species breed in northern latitudes during the summer, then migrate to warmer climes for the winter.

Shrikes are medium-sized birds, up to 50 cm (20 in) in length, with grey, brown, or black and white plumage. Their beaks are hooked, like that of a bird of prey, reflecting their predatory nature, and their calls are strident.

Shrikes are known for their habit of catching insects and small vertebrates and impaling their bodies on thorns, the spikes on barbed-wire fences or any available sharp point. This helps them to tear the flesh into smaller, more conveniently sized fragments, and serves as a cache so that the shrike can return to the uneaten portions at a later time.

Yellow-throated Vireo (Vireo flavifrons) by Anthony 747

Yellow-throated Vireo (Vireo flavifrons) by Anthony 747

By them the birds of the heavens have their home; They sing among the branches. (Psalms 104:12 NKJV)

The vireos make up a family, Vireonidae, of small to medium-sized passerine birds (mostly) restricted to the New World. They are typically dull-plumaged and greenish in color, the smaller species resembling wood warblers apart from their heavier bills. They range in size from the Chocó vireo, dwarf vireo and lesser greenlet, all at around 10 centimeters and 8 grams, to the peppershrikes and shrike-vireos at up to 17 centimeters and 40 grams.

Most species are found in Middle America and northern South America. Thirteen species of true vireos occur farther north, in the United States, Bermuda and Canada; of these all but Hutton’s vireo are migratory. Members of the family seldom fly long distances except in migration (Salaman & Barlow 2003). They inhabit forest environments, with different species preferring forest canopies, undergrowth, or mangrove swamps.

Males of most species are persistent singers. Songs are usually rather simple, monotonous in some species of the Caribbean littoral and islands, and most elaborate and pleasant to human ears in the Chocó vireo and the peppershrikes. (Info from Wikipedia)

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And God Almighty bless thee, and make thee fruitful, and multiply thee, that thou mayest be a multitude of people; (Genesis 28:3 KJV)

And Jacob said unto Joseph, God Almighty appeared unto me at Luz in the land of Canaan, and blessed me, (Genesis 48:3 KJV)

Saying, We give thee thanks, O Lord God Almighty, which art, and wast, and art to come; because thou hast taken to thee thy great power, and hast reigned. (Revelation 11:17 KJV)

And they sing the song of Moses the servant of God, and the song of the Lamb, saying, Great and marvellous are thy works, Lord God Almighty; just and true are thy ways, thou King of saints. (Revelation 15:3 KJV)

Listen to Nell Reese play as you watch these two beautifully created families of birds:

“El Shaddai” – by Nell Reese

“El Shaddai” means “God Almighty”

Sunday Inspirations

Birds of the World

Shrike – Wikipedia

Vireo – Wikipedia

Sharing The Gospel

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Sunday Inspiration – Whistlers and Avian Friends

Whitehead (Mohoua albicilla) ©WikiC

Whitehead (Mohoua albicilla) ©WikiC

But whoso keepeth his word, in him verily is the love of God perfected: hereby know we that we are in him. (1 John 2:5 KJV)

For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments: and his commandments are not grievous. (1 John 5:3 KJV)

Mohoua is a small genus of three bird species endemic to New Zealand. Their taxonomic placement has presented problems: They have typically been placed in the Pachycephalidae family (whistlers), but in 2013 it was established that they are best placed in their own family, Mohouidae.

All three species display some degree of sexual dimorphism in terms of size, with the males being the larger of the two sexes. Mohoua are gregarious and usually forage in groups . They also forage in mixed species flocks at times, frequently forming the nucleus of such flocks. Social organization and behavior is well documented for all three Mohoua species; cooperative breeding has been observed in all three species and is common in the Whitehead and Yellowhead. The three species of this genus are the sole hosts for the Long-tailed Cuckoo which acts as a brood parasite upon them, pushing their eggs out of the nest and laying a single one of its own in their place so that they take no part in incubation of their eggs or in raising their young.

Varied Sittella (Daphoenositta chrysoptera) Male by Ian

Varied Sittella (Daphoenositta chrysoptera) Male by Ian

The three Sittellas are in the Neosittidae family. are small passerines which resemble nuthatches in appearance.[1] The wings are long and broad, and when spread have clearly fingered tips. The family has a generally weak flight, which may explain their inability to colonize suitable habitat on islands like Tasmania. The legs are short but they have long toes, but in spite of their lifestyle they show little adaptation towards climbing. They have short tails and are between 10–14 cm in length and 8–20 g in weight, with the black sittella tending to be slightly larger and heavier. The bill is dagger shaped in the case of the black sittella and slightly upturned in the varied sittella. The plumage of the black sittella is mostly black with a red face; that of the varied sittella is more complex, with the numerous subspecies having many variations on the theme. The calls of sittellas are generally simple and uncomplicated. The sittellas are social and generally restless birds of scrub, forests and woodlands. In Australia they generally avoid only the dense rainforest, whereas in New Guinea this is the only habitat they inhabit, avoiding only lowland forest.

Wattled Ploughbill (Eulacestoma nigropectus) ©Drawing WikiC

Wattled Ploughbill (Eulacestoma nigropectus) ©Drawing WikiC

The Wattled Ploughbill is a small, approximately 14 cm long, olive-brown songbird with a strong, thick, wedge-shaped black bill, used to plough into dead tree branches, bark and twigs in search for its insects diet. The sexes are different. The male has black underparts, black wings and a large circular pink wattle on the cheek. The female has olive-green plumage and pale olive below. Only the adult male has wattles.

The only member of the monotypic genus Eulacestoma and family Eulacestomidae, the wattled ploughbill is distributed and endemic to central mountain ranges of New Guinea. The diet consists mainly of insects.

Crested Bellbird (Oreoica gutturalis) ©WikiC

Crested Bellbird (Oreoica gutturalis) ©WikiC

Oreoicidae is a newly recognized family of small insectivorous songbirds, formerly placed in the Old World warbler “wastebin” family. It contains 3 species, all in different genera. Rufous-naped Whistler, Crested Pitohui and Crested Bellbird.

Australian Golden Whistler (Pachycephala pectoralis) by Ian

Australian Golden Whistler (Pachycephala pectoralis) by Ian

The Whistler family has 56 species. The family Pachycephalidae, collectively the whistlers, includes the whistlers, shrikethrushes, shriketits, pitohuis and crested bellbird, and is part of the ancient Australo-Papuan radiation of songbirds. Its members range from small to medium in size, and occupy most of Australasia. Australia and New Guinea are the centre of their diversity, and in the case of the whistlers, the South Pacific islands as far as Tonga and Samoa and parts of Asia as far as India. The exact delimitation of boundaries of the family are uncertain.

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For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord. (Romans 8:38-39 KJV)

He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love. In this was manifested the love of God toward us, because that God sent his only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through him. Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins. (1 John 4:8-10 KJV)

Listen to Dr. Richard Gregory sing as you watch these five beautifully created families of birds:

“The Love of God” ~ Dr. Richard Gregory

Sunday Inspirations

Birds of the World

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Gideon

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Sunday Inspiration – Cuckooshrikes

Black-faced Cuckooshrike (Coracina novaehollandiae)  by Ian

Black-faced Cuckooshrike (Coracina novaehollandiae) by Ian

Out of the ground the LORD God formed every beast of the field and every bird of the air, and brought them to Adam to see what he would call them. And whatever Adam called each living creature, that was its name. (Genesis 2:19 NKJV)

The cuckooshrikes and allies in the Campephagidae family are small to medium-sized passerine bird species found in the subtropical and tropical Africa, Asia and Australasia. The roughly 92 species are found in eight (or nine) genera which comprise five distinct groups, the ‘true’ cuckooshrikes (Campephaga, Coracina, Lobotos, Pteropodocys and Campochaera) the trillers (Lalage), the minivets (Pericrocotus), the flycatcher-shrikes (Hemipus). The woodshrikes (Tephrodornis) were often considered to be in this family but are probably better placed in their own family, the Tephrodornithidae, along with the philentomas and the flycatcher-shrikes.

Pied Triller (Lalage nigra) ©WikiC

Pied Triller (Lalage nigra) ©WikiC

Overall the cuckooshrikes are medium to small arboreal birds, generally long and slender. The smallest species is the small minivet at 16 cm (6.3 in) and 6-12 grams (0.2-0.4 oz), while the largest is the south Melanesian cuckooshrike at 35 cm (14 in) and 180 grams (6 oz). They are predominantly greyish with white and black, although the minivets are brightly coloured in red, yellow and black, and the blue cuckooshrike of central Africa is all-over glossy blue. The four cuckooshrikes in the genus Campephaga exhibit sexual dimorphism, with males that have glossy black plumage and bright red or yellow wattles, the females having more subdued olive-green plumage. The genus Coracina is not monophyletic.

New Caledonian Cuckooshrike (Coracina analis) ©WikiC

New Caledonian Cuckooshrike (Coracina analis) ©WikiC

The majority of cuckooshrike are forest birds. Some species are restricted to primary forest, like the New Caledonian cuckooshrike, others are able to use more disturbed forest. Around eleven species use much more open habitat, one Australian species, the ground cuckooshrike being found in open plains and scrubland with few trees.

The ‘true’ cuckooshrikes are usually found singly, in pairs, and in small family groups, whereas the minivets, flycatcher-shrikes and wood-shrikes more frequently form small flocks. There is a considerable amount of variation within the family as a whole with regards to calls, some call very infrequently and some, principally the minivets, are extremely vocal.

(Info from Wikipedia with editing)

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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 KJV)

Jesus answered them, “I told you, and you do not believe. The works that I do in My Father’s name, they bear witness of Me. (John 10:25 NKJV)

Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ; (Ephesians 5:20 KJV)

Listen to the Hyssongs as you watch the interesting Cuckooshrike family whom the Lord created:

“There’s Something About That Name” © The Hyssongs

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More Sunday Inspirations

Birds of the World

Cuckooshrike – Wikipedia

Cuckoo-shrike – IBC

Cuckooshrikes – Birds of the World

Falling Plates

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Sunday Inspiration – Vangas and Friends

White-headed Vanga (Artamella viridis) ©WikiC

White-headed Vanga (Artamella viridis) ©WikiC

For every beast of the forest is mine, the cattle on a thousand hills. I know all the birds of the hills, and all that moves in the field is mine. (Psalms 50:10-11 ESV)

The Vangas (from vanga, Malagasy for the hook-billed vanga, Vanga curvirostris) are a group of little-known small to medium-sized passerine birds restricted to Madagascar and the Comoros. They are usually classified as the family Vangidae. There are about 21 or 22 species, depending on taxonomy. Most species are shrike-like, arboreal forest birds, feeding on reptiles, frogs and insects. Several other Madagascan birds more similar to Old World warblers, Old World babblers or Old World flycatchers are now often placed in this family. Vangas differ greatly in bill shape and have a variety of foraging methods. Their stick nests are built in trees. They do not migrate.

Mounted Bornean Bristlehead (Pityriasis gymnocephala), at the Muséum d'Histoire naturelle de Genève. ©WikiC

Mounted Bornean Bristlehead (Pityriasis gymnocephala), at the Muséum d’Histoire naturelle de Genève. ©WikiC

The Bornean Bristlehead (Pityriasis gymnocephala), also variously known as the bristled shrike, bald-headed crow or the bald-headed wood-shrike, is the only member of the passerine family Pityriaseidae and genus Pityriasis. It is an enigmatic and uncommon species of the rainforest canopy of the island of Borneo, to which it is endemic.

White-breasted Woodswallow (Artamus leucorynchus amydrus) by Lee Zoo Miami

White-breasted Woodswallow (Artamus leucorynchus amydrus) by Lee ZM

Woodswallows are soft-plumaged, somber-coloured passerine birds. There are 24 a single genus, Artamus, The woodswallows are either treated as a subfamily, Artaminae in an expanded family Artamidae, which includes the butcherbirds and Australian Magpie, or as the only genus in that family. The generic name, which in turn gives rise to the family name, is derived from the Ancient Greek artamos, meaning butcher or murder. The name was given due to their perceived similarity to shrikes, indeed a former common name for the group was “swallow-starlings”

Woodswallows are smooth, agile flyers with moderately large, semi-triangular wings. They are among the very few passerines birds that soar, and can often be seen feeding just above the treetops. One sedentary species aside, they are nomads, following the best conditions for flying insects, and often roosting in large flocks.
Although woodswallows have a brush-tipped tongue they seldom use it for gathering nectar.

Mottled Whistler (Rhagologus leucostigma) ©©Katerina Tvardikova

Mottled Whistler (Rhagologus leucostigma) ©©Katerina Tvardikova

The Mottled Whistler (Rhagologus leucostigma) is a species of bird whose relationships are unclear but most likely related to the woodswallows, boatbills and butcherbirds. It is monotypic within the genus Rhagologus and family Rhagologidae. It is found in Indonesia and Papua New Guinea, where its natural habitat is subtropical or tropical moist montane forests

Common Iora (Aegithina tiphia) by Clement Francis

Common Iora (Aegithina tiphia) by Clement Francis

The Ioras (Aegithinidae) are a small family of four passerine bird species found in India and southeast Asia. The Ioras are small to medium small sized passerines, ranging from 11.5 to 15.5 cm (4.5–6.1 in) in length. Overall the males are larger than the females. These are reminiscent of the bulbuls, but whereas that group tends to be drab in colouration, the ioras are more brightly colored. The group exhibits sexual dimorphism in its plumage, with the males being brightly plumaged in yellows and greens. Unlike the leafbirds, ioras have thin legs, and their bills are proportionately longer. Calls are strident whistles; songs are musical to human ears.

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Jesus said unto him, If thou canst believe, all things are possible to him that believeth. (Mark 9:23 KJV)

Then said Jesus unto the twelve, Will ye also go away? Then Simon Peter answered him, Lord, to whom shall we go? thou hast the words of eternal life. And we believe and are sure that thou art that Christ, the Son of the living God. (John 6:67-69 KJV)

Listen to the Hyssongs as you watch these five different families the Lord has created for us to enjoy.

“I Still Believe” – ©The Hyssongs

Sunday Inspirations

Birds of the World

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Gospel Presentation

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Sunday Inspiration – Bushshrikes and Boatbills

Rosy-patched Bushshrike (Telophorus cruentus) ©WikiC

Rosy-patched Bushshrike (Telophorus cruentus) ©WikiC

And the angel of the LORD appeared unto him in a flame of fire out of the midst of a bush: and he looked, and, behold, the bush burned with fire, and the bush was not consumed. And Moses said, I will now turn aside, and see this great sight, why the bush is not burnt. (Exodus 3:2-3 KJV)

This Sunday you get to meet two more families from the Song Birds (Passerines), the Malaconotidae – Bushshrikes Family with 50 members and the Machaerirhynchidae – Boatbills Family with only 2 species.

Orange-breasted Bushshrike (Chlorophoneus sulfureopectus) ©WikiC

Orange-breasted Bushshrike (Chlorophoneus sulfureopectus) ©WikiC

The Bushshrikes are smallish passerine bird species. They were formerly classed with the true shrikes in the family Laniidae, but are now considered sufficiently distinctive to be separated from that group as the family Malaconotidae.

This is an African group of species which are found in scrub or open woodland. They are similar in habits to shrikes, hunting insects and other small prey from a perch on a bush. Although similar in build to the shrikes, these tend to be either colorful species or largely black; some species are quite secretive.

Some bushshrikes have flamboyant displays. The male puffbacks puff out the loose feathers on their rump and lower back, to look almost ball-like.
These are mainly insectivorous forest or scrub birds. Up to four eggs are laid in a cup nest in a tree.

Yellow-breasted Boatbill (Machaerirhynchus flaviventer) by Ian

Yellow-breasted Boatbill (Machaerirhynchus flaviventer) by Ian

Boatbills or the Machaerirhynchus is a genus of passerine birds with affinities to woodswallows and butcherbirds. The two species are known as boatbills. The genus is distributed across New Guinea and northern Queensland. (Info from Wikipedia)

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Listen to a quartet sing as you watch these two beautifully created families of birds:

“We Shall See Jesus” ~ Margaret Hiebert, Pastor and Jill Osborne and Pastor Jerry Smith

Sunday Inspirations

Birds of the World

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Gospel Message

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Sunday Inspiration – Woodshrikes and Helmetshrikes

White-crested Helmetshrike (Prionops plumatus) ©WikiC

White-crested Helmetshrike (Prionops plumatus) ©WikiC

And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God: (Ephesians 6:17 KJV)

The two families this week are the Woodshrikes from tropical Asia and the Helmetshrikes are birds of Africa. Both are from the PASSERIFORMES – Passerines Order, which are Songbirds. The Lord has given them all a song to sing. Trust you will enjoy seeing them and listening to our orchestra play about ‘Joy.”

Large woodshrike (Tephrodornis gularis) ©WikiC

Large woodshrike (Tephrodornis gularis) ©WikiC

Tephrodornithidae – Woodshrikes and allies – 8 Species – is a family of birds that includes the genera Hemipus, Tephrodornis and Philentoma. The family was proposed in 2006 on the basis of a molecular phylogenetic study by Moyle which showed a close relation between Hemipus and Tephrodornis. Some taxonomists argue for a broader treatment of the genera under the Vangidae

Chestnut-fronted Helmetshrike (Prionops scopifrons) ©WikiC

Chestnut-fronted Helmetshrike (Prionops scopifrons) ©WikiC

Prionopidae – Helmetshrikes – 8 Species –This is an African and south Asian group of species which are found in scrub or open woodland. They are similar in feeding habits to shrikes, hunting insects and other small prey from a perch on a bush or tree. Although similar in build to the shrikes, these tend to be colourful species with the distinctive crests or other head ornaments, such as wattles, from which they get their name.

Helmetshrikes are noisy and sociable birds, some of which breed in loose colonies. They lay 2-4 eggs in neat, well-hidden nests.

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But let us who are of the day be sober, putting on the breastplate of faith and love, and as a helmet the hope of salvation. For God did not appoint us to wrath, but to obtain salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ, (1 Thessalonians 5:8-9 NKJV)

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, (Galatians 5:22 KJV)

Make me to hear joy and gladness; that the bones which thou hast broken may rejoice. (Psalms 51:8 KJV)

Listen to the Faith Baptist Orchestra play as you watch these two beautifully created families of birds:

” I’ve Got Joy” ~ by the Faith Baptist Orchestra

Sunday Inspirations

Birds of the World

Tephrodornithidae – Wikipedia

Tephrodornithidae – Le quide ornitho

Helmetshrike – Wikipedia

Helmetshrikes – Bird Families of the World

Wordless Birds

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Sunday Inspiration – Whipbirds, Wattle-eyes and Allies

As you have been viewing the Sunday Inspirations lately, we have been going through the Passerines or Passerfiormes Order in taxonomic order. So far, I have shown you 30 families, which makes us almost a forth of the way through the 125 Passerine families.

Today’s families are the Psophodidae – Whipbirds, Jewel-babblers, Quail-thrushes Family with 16 members and the Platysteiridae – Wattle-eyes, Batises Family with 33 species.

Whipbirds, Jewel-babblers, Quail-thrushes that make up the Psophodidae family are native to Australia and nearby areas. They occur in forest, generally replacing each other at different altitudes. The painted quail-thrush is also found in the forests of New Guinea.The other quail-thrushes are restricted to Australia where they are found in drier habitats, occurring in open forest, scrub and on stony ground.[8] None of the species are thought to be threatened but one subspecies of the spotted quail-thrush is possibly extinct.

The whipbirds and wedgebills are all found in Australia, occurring in a range of habitats from rainforest to arid scrub. The western whipbird is considered to be near-threatened because of habitat loss and fires while the Papuan whipbird is classed as data deficient..

They are terrestrial birds which fly fairly weakly and prefer to squat or run when disturbed. They forage on the ground feeding mainly on insects and other invertebrates.[9] In the desert, quail-thrushes also eat some seeds. They build a cup-shaped nest among shrubs or on the ground. Two or three eggs are laid.

Eastern Whipbird (Psophodes olivaceus) by Ian

Eastern Whipbird (Psophodes olivaceus) by Ian

Here is the song of the Eastern Whipbird. It sounds like someone snapping a whip.

Brown-throated Wattle-eye (Platysteira cyanea) ©WikiC

Brown-throated Wattle-eye (Platysteira cyanea) Male ©WikiC

The Platysteiridae Wattle-eyes, Batises Family are a favorite of mine because of their eyes. They are a family of small stout birds living in trees, primarily of the woodlands and forests of sub-Saharan Africa. The family contains the wattle-eyes, batises and shrike-flycatchers. They were previously classed as a subfamily of the Old World flycatcher family Muscicapidae.

These insect-eating birds are found in usually open forests or bush. They hunt by flycatching, or by taking prey from the ground like a shrike. The nest is a small neat cup low in a tree or bush. The most important component of the diet of all species is insects, although spiders, millipedes and scorpions are also taken, and there are even records of small lizards being consumed.

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For the ways of man are before the eyes of the LORD, And He ponders all his paths. (Proverbs 5:21 NKJV)

My son, give me your heart, And let your eyes observe my ways. (Proverbs 23:26 NKJV)

The humble shall see this and be glad; And you who seek God, your hearts shall live. (Psalms 69:32 NKJV)

Listen to Sean play as you watch these two beautifully created families of birds:

” Be Thou My Vision and Battle Hymn of the Republic” ~ played by Sean Fielder

Sunday Inspirations

Passeriformes Birds so far:

Birds of the World

Cinclosomatidae or Psophodidae Family – Wikipedia

Platysteiridae – Wattle-eye – Wikipedia

Good News

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