Bible Birds – Cranes I

Sarus Crane (Grus antigone) by Lee at Wings of Asia

Sarus Crane (Grus antigone) by Lee at Wings of Asia

The 15 species of Cranes worldwide are: Black Crowned, Black-necked, Brolga, Demoiselle, Eurasian, Grey Crowned, Hooded, Red-Crowned, Sandhill, Sarus(tallest flying bird-6’ tall), Siberian, Wattled, White-naped, and the Whooping Crane (tallest N. American flying bird-5’ tall). The Cranes belong to the Gruidae – Cranes Family.

Cranes are tall birds from 3 to 6 feet tall, with wingspans over 6 feet. The tallest Crane is the Sarus and the shortest is the Demoiselle. They fly with their neck straight out and their long legs trailing. They chatter and call when flying. We have plenty of Sandhill Cranes here in Central Florida walking around the neighborhoods. They seem pretty tame sometimes and will eat out of your hand. They were bringing a small flock of Whooping Cranes to Florida every fall that followed an Ultra Light Aircraft from Wisconsin. We have a few non-migratory Whooping Cranes in the area that I have seen in a cow field off US 27.

Sandhill Cranes and Babies in yard

Sandhill Cranes and Babies in yard

There are only two verses in the Bible that mention the Crane.

Cranes migrate by following known paths taught them by their parents, or substitutes. Migrating birds know when and where to go and when to come. When God created them, He put that information in them.

Like a crane or a swallow, so did I chatter: I did mourn as a dove: mine eyes fail with looking upward: O LORD, I am oppressed; undertake for me. (Isaiah 38:14 KJV)

“So did I chatter – … The idea here is doubtless that of pain that was expressed in sounds resembling that made by birds – a broken, unmeaning unintelligible sighing; or quick breathing, and moaning. ” Barnes Commentary

Yea, the stork in the heaven knoweth her appointed times; and the turtle and the crane and the swallow observe the time of their coming; but my people know not the judgment of the LORD. (Jeremiah 8:7 KJV)

“The instinct of the migratory birds leads them with unfailing regularity to return every spring from their winter abodes in summer climes (Song of Solomon 2:12); but God’s people will not return to Him even when the winter of His wrath is past, and He invites them back to the spring of His favor.” Jameison, Faussett, and Brown Commentary

As you watch the following video notice that the two Bible verses are being demonstrated. Notice the chattering as they fly about and also that they are heading out for their migration to warmer climates. Migration means travel to another area. Usually here in America, the birds go south in the winter and then return north in the spring as it warms back up. This is God’s way of protecting birds that cannot survive in the cold.

Sandhill Cranes(grey) at the Plate River and some Whooping Cranes (white)


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