Birds of the Bible – Storks

Many people think of babies being delivered when a Stork is mentioned. I am amazed when I watch the Wood Storks here in Florida. When they are on the ground, they are very unbecoming (aka-ugly), but when they are flying, it is so awesome to see the gracefulness of their flight and how beautiful their wings are.

The Wood Stork is a large bird (35”) that has huge long legs and a wing span of five and a half feet. It is the only stork that breeds here in the U.S. There are 19 species of storks worldwide. It has a long, thick, down-curved bill, and its head is black and un-feathered. The Stork is a wadder and raises its young in late winter in Florida during the dryer season. When the water is lower, the fish concentrate, and the Wood Stork and other birds can find an ample supply to feed their young. When they fly, they hold the neck extended.

Pictures by my friend Reineir Munguia, (Professional Photographer)
The stork is found in the list of unclean birds in Lev 11:19 and in Deu. 14:18
In Psalms the list is repeated with a comment here about the stork.

Where the birds make their nests; The stork has her home in the fir trees. Psa(104:17)

My picture of a Wood Stork in tree and Reinier’s much better one.

Jeremiah refers to the migration of birds and how they know when it’s time to leave. Here is an interesting quote from an article from Israel: The Bird’s Eye View By Sherri Mandell

Israel may be a small country, but thousands of birds annually take advantage of its passage-friendly flyway and the welcoming sanctuaries that dot the country.
The ancients considered Israel the center of the world, and it certainly feels that way if you look up at the sky in the spring and autumn. Half a billion migrating birds, more than 230 species, fly in Israeli air space on annual migrations between Europe, western Asia and Africa.
These journeys were noted long ago: “The stork in the heaven also knows her appointed times; and the turtledove, swift and the crane observe their time of coming” (Jeremiah 8:7).
“Tourists are sometimes afraid to visit here,” observes Alen Kasel, education director of the Jerusalem Bird Observatory, “but [the birds] never abandon us.”

Zechariah alludes to the “wings of a stork”.

Then I raised my eyes and looked, and there were two women, coming with the wind in their wings; for they had wings like the wings of a stork, and they lifted up the basket between earth and heaven. (Zec 5:9)

 

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