Come and see the works of God; He is awesome in His doing toward the sons of men. (Psa 66:5)
“It is common for world travelers to learn at least a few words of other languages as they visit different cultures and meet different people. Not only is the marsh warbler a champion world traveler, he is also a champion linguist.
The Marsh Warbler is a small brown bird that spends only two months out of the year in its central European breeding grounds. It spends most of the year in Zambia. The warbler travels to its winter grounds in Africa on a route that takes it through the Middle East and the Arabian Peninsula, across the Red Sea and into northeast Africa. Despite the distance warblers travel, they frequently return to the same bushes year after year.
The new generation of warblers is still quite young when they begin their 4,500-mile trip to Africa. These young warblers learn not only the calls of the various birds in Africa but also the calls of birds along the way. Warblers have been heard to imitate more than 210 species. One warbler once imitated 76 different species in 35 minutes. The following year, when the warblers return to Europe, the offer realistic mimics of other birds for only the first three or four days before they return to their own calls. This means that at the right time of year, walking through the English or German countryside, you might hear very convincing sounds from the African countryside.
The Marsh Warbler is a special tribute to our Creator’s inventive creativty as it celebrates in song the marvelous variety He fashioned in the bird kingdom.
Prayer: Dear Lord, as the Marsh Warbler praises You in its special way for the wonderful variety You have created in the bird kingdom, help me praise You for Your forgiveness in a special way before the world. Amen.”
From “Feathered Language Master“, Letting God Create Your Day, Vol. 2, p.118 Copyright from Creation Moments, 2011.
The Marsh Warbler, Acrocephalus palustris, is an Old World warbler currently classified in the family Acrocephalidae. It breeds in temperate Europe and western Asia and winters mainly in south east Africa. It is notable for incorporating striking imitations of a wide variety of other birds into its song.
The Marsh Warbler breeds in a variety of mostly damp habitats, but in Africa winters mainly in dry, well-vegetated areas. It is common over much of its breeding range and expanding its distribution in some areas. However in Britain it is now virtually extinct as a breeding bird. This insectivorous warbler can be easily confused with several close relatives, but the imitative song of the male is highly distinctive. The male’s distinctive song is useful for identification, as no other member of the genus mimics other birds to any significant extent. The Marsh Warbler also tends to avoid the stands of pure reed which are the Reed Warblers’ favoured habitat.
The Marsh Warbler is best known for the highly imitative song uttered by males, and very occasionally by females. Each male Marsh Warbler incorporates imitations of a wide range of other birds into its song. Other passerines are most commonly imitated, but the calls of other kinds of bird such as waders, hornbills and pigeons have been noted too. On average, each male bird incorporates imitations of 75 other species into its song, with rather more African than northern species mimicked. All learning seems to take place in the summer the bird is hatched in Europe or Asia, and in its first winter in Africa. The calls of birds heard in subsequent years are not added to the warbler’s repertoire. Females may utter a simple, non-imitative song, and a range of other calls are also known. (Wikipedia)
Songs of a Marsh Warbler by Stuart Fisher – xeno-canto.org
What an interesting little bird that the Lord has formed through His creation. What a fantastic Creator and Saviour we have who cares so much for Marsh Warbler and for us.
All things were made through Him, and without Him nothing was made that was made. (John 1:3)