Avian Kinds on the Ark – Birds Embarking

Pair of Raja Shelduck by Ian

In this second article in this series, Avian Kinds on the Ark – What is a Kind?, I am introducing you to some of the studies by Dr. Jean Lightner. She and others are trying to figure out how many “kinds” of birds would have enter the ark.  This study is worthwhile as a stand-alone research project — yet its importance is now accented by the “Ark Encounter”, a full-sized replica of the Noah’s Ark (produced and hosted by ANSWERS IN GENESIS ministry in Kentucky). The Ark Encounter team are trying to be as close to the Bible as possible in filling the ark with critters and especially avian kinds.

Since that article, I have found some more interesting data and quotes that I’d like to share. First, I made this quote in that article.

“In Birds of the Bible – Foundation #3 Updated, ” I made this remark “Noah did not have to round up the animals, they came to him. Because not every animal we see today came on board but the main kinds (for instance the “bird kinds” may have had a “warbler kind” but not have black and white warblers, yellow-rumped warblers, hooded warbler, etc.), which ever ones they were, there was plenty of room for them. I have an idea that because the LORD sent the animals, birds, and critters, that their DNAs [i.e., their specific genes  — DNA-based genotypes) were of the highest quality. (That is my opinion)”

I want to expand on that this time. I have thinking about the birds that came to Noah. Did they come to Noah?  —  or did Noah have to go round them up? No, Noah did not have to go searching for the animals. After re-reading Genesis 7-9, it seems clear that they came to Noah. God sent them, by pairs of seven for each “kind” of birds. Dr. Lightner basically places the kinds equal with families in most cases.

Of every clean beast thou shalt take to thee by sevens, the male and his female: and of beasts that are not clean by two, the male and his female. Of fowls also of the air by sevens, the male and the female [notice!  —  of the bird kinds, the “sevens” exception was applied, regardless of whether the bird kinds were “clean” or “unclean”]; to keep seed alive upon the face of all the earth. (Genesis 7:2-3 KJV)

Great Frigatebird (Fregata minor) pair ©Flickr Len Blumin

Great Frigatebird (Fregata minor) pair ©Flickr Len Blumin

And Noah went in, and his sons, and his wife, and his sons’ wives with him, into the Ark, because of the waters of the flood. Of clean beasts, and of beasts that are not clean, and of fowls, and of every thing that creepeth upon the earth, There went in two and two unto Noah into the ark, the male and the female, as God had commanded Noah. And it came to pass after seven days, that the waters of the flood were upon the earth. (Genesis 7:7-10 KJV)

In the selfsame day entered Noah, and Shem, and Ham, and Japheth, the sons of Noah, and Noah’s wife, and the three wives of his sons with them, into the ark; They, and every beast after his kind, and all the cattle after their kind, and every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth after his kind, and every fowl after his kind, every bird of every sort. And they went in unto Noah into the ark, two and two of all flesh, wherein is the breath of life. (Genesis 7:13-15 KJV)

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)

Every beast, every creeping thing, and every fowl, and whatsoever creepeth upon the earth, after their kinds, went forth out of the ark. And Noah builded an altar unto the LORD; and took of every clean beast, and of every clean fowl, and offered burnt offerings on the altar. (Genesis 8:19-20 KJV)

Green-winged Teal (Anas carolinensis) Pair ©WikiC

Green-winged Teal (Anas carolinensis) Pair ©WikiC

That is quite a bit of Scripture, and the bolding is to help with some points to I would like to make. First, notice that all the cattle or land animals are coming in pairs. The male and his female  — that pair is deemed as “one” animal unit, because that is how God planned and made these animals in the first place. Critters that are not birds (i.e., land beasts like cattle, elephants, horses, etc.) are coming in by seven pairs if their kind is deemed “clean”, or by one pair if “unclean”.  Yet the birds (fowls) are not coming in by clean or unclean. They are all coming in by seven pairs, according to their kind.  [Notice how this shows a special favoritism that God has for birds!  In a sense, therefore, it is a godly trait to regard birds as favorite animals! :) ]

Also notice that Noah and his family entered the Ark first, then the critters came in. “There went in two and two unto Noah into the ark” (7:9), and “in the selfsame day entered Noah” (7:13), then,  “they went in unto Noah into the ark” (7:15).  If I am reading the Word correctly, Noah was in the Ark when the land animals, birds and creeping things came in. Personally, I think that the Lord rounded up the critters that He wanted to be in the Ark to be preserved. If the Lord can make ravens to feed Elijah, ” I have commanded the ravens to feed thee there ” (1 Kings 17:4), can He not command the exact critters to come to Noah? Their DNA must have been the near perfect for their kinds, especially for conserving and transmitting the biodiversity that God Himself wanted to be provided to the post-Flood world. Just as all the diverse humans in the world (today) come from the eight humans on board the Ark, their DNA was and is diverse enough to produce all the different physical characteristics (skin colors, hair types, body sizes, etc.) that we see today.  [In a sense, God preserved and transmitted all the molecular biology “hardware” and DNA/RNA “software” needed for all the phenotype “applications” we have today.]

Another point about the quoted verses. In Genesis 8 we see that it didn’t rain until seven days later. Could that be to give Noah and his family time to place all the animals in their stalls, pens, cages, or whatever containers were used for the long voyage ahead? What do you put “creeping things” in? :)

When they came off the Ark, after the Flood was over, not a single animal has perished because they came off in pairs,: one pair of unclean land animals (and “creeping things”), seven pairs of clean land animals, and seven pair of every “kind” of genetically defined bird category. Noah gives an offering to the Lord and uses one pair from the clean critters. Now we have six pairs of clean animals with which to breed abundantly in the earth, and be fruitful, and multiply upon the earth.

Northern Pintail (Anas acuta) pair by Ray

Northern Pintail (Anas acuta) pair by Ray

As was said before, the avian taxonomy of the birds (which is ultimately a mix of common sense, careful observations, plus some arbitrariness) is in flux. As Dr. Jean Lightner indicated there is much shuffling going on trying to figure out which bird belongs “where” [i.e., belongs to this group or that group, based ultimately on genetic compatibility — which is demonstrated by breedability). Here are a few quotes I thought interesting about this situation. Of course, these are from those who believe in evolution, but they are shaking their heads trying to figure which family and genus birds belong to.

Here is a quote from DNA Reveals New Bird Species by Current Results. “Examining the differences in the genetic bar code among birds leads scientists to suspect that 15 unidentified species of birds breed on the North American continent. At the same time, analysis of 643 bird species finds that 42 of these should actually be lumped as 17 species.” [Seems they keep narrowing down the species toward the kinds.]  Here’s more interesting quotes from the same article.

Western Gull (Larus occidentalis) Pair ©WikiC

Western Gull (Larus occidentalis) Pair ©WikiC

“Can’t tell apart all those large, white-headed gulls lingering along the west coast seashore? Well apparently neither does the mitrochondiral DNA for eight species such as glaucous and herring gulls. Other birds that mitrochondrial DNA cannot distinguish are American from northwestern crows and red-naped from red-breasted sapsuckers. Most of these species with overlapping DNA are known to hybridize [i.e., they can successfully breed together].”

“Figuring out who is truly related to whom in modern bird families has been an ongoing problem, says Shannon Hackett. A biologist at the Field Museum in Chicago, she did not work on the new study. Part of the problem, she explains, is that at some point in the distant past, there was an explosion in the number of bird species. This rapid increase has made it difficult for scientists to decode the history of birds from fossils.” [Could that be when they were created?]

“In 2008, Hackett’s team studied 19 different segments of DNA from 169 bird species. Their tree of life suggested that falcons and hawks, and grebes and ducks, were only distantly related. Those surprises were confirmed by the new study.” [No surprise to Bible-believing creationists! Must be different kinds, maybe?]

African Hawk-Eagle (Aquila spilogaster) Pair ©WikiC

African Hawk-Eagle (Aquila spilogaster) Pair ©WikiC

Answers In Genesis has many articles on this subject, but again, I want to share a few quotes. These are from Bird Speciation From the Flood to the Present by Dr. David W Boyd, Jr.  In answer to how all those birds fit on the ark, he said, “Does that mean that Noah had two (or seven) of all 10,380 extant bird species (more if you count extinct species)? If a biblical kind and a species were equivalent, then yes. But they are not the same; many species are categorized under each biblical kind.”

“To help answer that question, we are aware that evolutionary scientists have recently compiled genetic and fossil evidence to suggest that flying birds originated from a group of dinosaurs in South America about 95 million years ago.6 Using their data, the scientists suggested that flying birds began radiating and diversifying over the world after a huge meteor struck near the Yucatan Peninsula 66 million years ago. The subsequent disaster of that meteor has been suggested as the main cause for the extinction of dinosaurs. Using this model, evolutionary scientists attempt to demonstrate that all birds in existence today descended from one common ancestor of the dinosaur lineage.”

“Scientists who accept the biblical account of creation and the worldwide Flood compile evidence from Scripture, genetics, the fossil record, hybridization data, and morphological characteristics to suggest that God created many kinds of birds that began radiating and diversifying over the world after the worldwide Flood destroyed the earth about 4,500 years ago. These birds included both flying and non-flying birds. The two answers given by evolutionary scientists and creation scientists are so far apart from one another that it seems almost impossible to think that they are looking at the same data.”

Cedar Waxwing (Bombycilla cedrorum) Passing Berries ©WikiC

Cedar Waxwing (Bombycilla cedrorum) Passing Berries ©WikiC

“A scientist with a biblical worldview has to account for the different species of birds found today in each created bird kind from the Flood to the present. Models of speciation and radiation for those events would only need thousands of years.”

Here is my most favorite quote from his article: “Dr. Jean Lightner has conservatively estimated that birds are comprised of about 196 created kinds.7 If we round that up to 200 bird kinds, we could account for all 10,380 extant species by each species diverging into two species just once every 750 yearsjust six times (200 to 400 to 800 to 1,600 to 3,200 to 6,400 to 12,800). That would even give us 2,420 more bird species to account for some extinction events. That is a very simplistic view and does not account for many variables, but it does provide us with a quick way to estimate if simple speciation (doubling) could account for all the birds we have today.

Here is a link to a very interesting chart I found on Pantasthumb. It shows the different birds grouped, by genera, within each family, in a tree format. Very interesting to look at. It might help make some of this article make a little more sense. Of course this is from an evolutionary perspective, but the evidence is shares by both sides.  TO SEE CHART The article this chart came from is “Update on the Tree of Birds“.

That is enough to think about for now. More later in another Avian Kinds on the Ark. Actually, this series is a sub-series for Birds of the Bible.

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Avian Kinds on the Ark – Introduction

Avian Kinds on the Ark – What is a Kind?

DNA Reveals New Bird Species by Current Results.

Bird Speciation From the Flood to the Present by Dr. David W Boyd, Jr

Birds of the Bible – Foundation – The Ark

Birds of the Bible – Foundation #3 Updated

An Initial Estimate of Avian Ark Kinds,

Birds of the Bible – Seven By Seven

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Avian Kinds on the Ark – What Is A Kind?

Green-winged Teal (Anas carolinensis) Pair ©WikiC

They Came By Pairs – Green-winged Teal (Anas carolinensis) ©WikiC

And of every living thing of all flesh, two of every sort shalt thou bring into the ark, to keep them alive with thee; they shall be male and female. Of fowls after their kind, and of cattle after their kind, of every creeping thing of the earth after his kind, two of every sort shall come unto thee, to keep them alive. And take thou unto thee of all food that is eaten, and thou shalt gather it to thee; and it shall be for food for thee, and for them. Thus did Noah; according to all that God commanded him, so did he. (Genesis 6:19-22 KJV)

When Noah was preparing the Ark, he was informed that the animals and birds (fowls) after their kinds would come to him to keep them alive. Again, notice in Genesis 7:1-3 that the clean beast and the birds (fowls) all come by sevens (pairs) also. Clean or unclean, the birds came by seven pairs. There is no distinction made with them.

And the LORD said unto Noah, Come thou and all thy house into the ark; for thee have I seen righteous before me in this generation. Of every clean beast thou shalt take to thee by sevens, the male and his female: and of beasts that are not clean by two, the male and his female. Of fowls also of the air by sevens, the male and the female; to keep seed alive upon the face of all the earth. (Genesis 7:1-3 KJV)

Bobolink (Dolichonyx oryzivorus) CC Pair ramendan

Bobolink (Dolichonyx oryzivorus) ©© Pair ramendan

In Birds of the Bible – Foundation #3 Updated, I made this remark “Noah did not have to round up the animals, they came to him. Because not every animal we see today came on board but the main kinds (for instance the “bird kinds” may have had a “warbler kind” but not have black and white warblers, yellow-rumped warblers, hooded warbler, etc.), which ever ones they were, there was plenty of room for them. I have an idea that because the LORD sent the animals, birds, and critters, that their DNA’s were of the highest quality. (That is my opinion)”

At the time that comment was made, I was not aware of this article from Dr. Jean Lightner, about the Avian Ark Kinds. This series is based on her’s and other’s research into the Avian Kinds that came on board the ark.

“Kinds” or created kinds are called “baramins” and they used different methods to try to find the original kinds. This part of her article is rather technical, and honestly, I don’t understand some of the terms and methods discussed. Yet, the findings, is what I would like to share with you. Those, we can understand. (You can read her article HERE)

Most of us are aware that the many variety of dogs we see today came from an original “dog kind.” No matter how much interbreeding they do, the results are still dog kinds. Cats and dogs don’t interbreed, so no evolution is involved. Variation within the dog kind has occurred, just as it has in the “bird kinds”. In the Bird Kinds, they have come up with approximately 196 putative bird kinds and most of those break down to our modern-day Families in our taxonomy. Yet, in the I.O.C. their are 239 families and two Incertae Sedis families which make 241 families. The next articles will show how those Families compare to today’s families.

By the way, my math was off in that first article. I forgot the two Incertae Sedis Families. That makes for 45 extra families to account for.

Mountain Bluebird, male (R) & female (L) ©Mickey Barnes / from Birds & Blooms

Mountain Bluebird, male (R)- female (L) ©Mickey Barnes / from Birds & Blooms

Two quotes from Dr. Lighner’s article: “There is tremendous variety seen today in animal life as creatures have multiplied and filled the earth since the Flood (Genesis 8:17). In order to identify which modern species are related, being descendants of a single kind, interspecific hybrid data is utilized. When hybrid data is lacking, a cognitum approach is preferred; this identifies natural groupings based on human cognitive senses. Generally the cognitum at the family level (which is usually fairly strong) is preferred when hybrid data is lacking, though obvious cognita surrounding this level are noted.” (emphasis mine)

“As in mammals and amphibians, the state of avian taxonomy is in flux. Despite the ideal of neatly nested hierarchies in taxonomy, it seems groups of birds are repeatedly “changing nests.” This is partially because where an animal is placed depends on which characteristics one chooses to consider. While many had thought that molecular data would resolve these issues, in some cases it has exacerbated them.”

One thing we can see from all this. We will never know exactly who, what, or which one belongs to this family or that order or kind until we reach heaven and ask their Creator.

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

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Avian Kinds on the Ark – Introduction

Birds of the Bible – Foundation – The Ark

Birds of the Bible – Foundation #3 Updated

An Initial Estimate of Avian Ark Kinds,

Birds of the Bible – Seven By Seven

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Avian Kinds on the Ark – Introduction

Ark Encounter During Construction

Ark Encounter During Construction

You shall take with you seven each of every clean animal, a male and his female; two each of animals that are unclean, a male and his female; also seven each of birds of the air, male and female, to keep the species alive on the face of all the earth. (Genesis 7:2-3 NKJV)

Today in Williamstown, Kentucky, they had the Grand Opening of the Ark Encounter. The building of the Ark Encounter was mentioned in Birds of the Bible – Foundation – The Ark. Now, it is open and we are looking forward to the opportunity to go see this modern day, full sized Ark. It’s about 900 miles from where we live, but it is definitely on my “bucket list.”

What I want to do, in a series of articles, is to introduce the Avian Kinds, Bird kinds, that are thought to be on board. An article, An Initial Estimate of Avian Ark Kinds, appeared on Nov. 27, 2013. It was written by Dr. Jean Lightner. Here is her abstract from that article.

Creationists recognize that animals were created according to their kinds, but there has been no comprehensive list of what those kinds are. As part of the Answers in Genesis Ark Encounter project, research was initiated in an attempt to more clearly identify and enumerate vertebrate kinds that were present on the Ark. In this paper, using methods previously described, 196 putative bird kinds are identified. Due to the limited information available and the fact that avian taxonomic classifications shift, this should be considered only a rough estimate.

I bolded the “196 putative bird kinds are identified” because that is what these articles are going to be about. According to I. O. C., the naming list that this site uses, there are 239 Families. On the Birds of the World family page, you will see this:

Lee’s Birds of the World, based on the IOC World Bird List 6.2 contains 10,637 extant species (and 154 extinct species)  classified in 40 Orders,  239 Families (plus 2 Incertae Sedis) and 2289 Genera and 20,490 Subspecies.

If my math is correct, 239 minus 196, equals 43. Okay, where did those 43 extra families come from? That is what this series is going to try to find out. (Not Today)

Ark Encounter - First Look, By TV station

Ark Encounter – First Look, By TV station

STAY TUNED!!

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Birds of the Bible – Foundation – The Ark

An Initial Estimate of Avian Ark Kinds

Grand Opening of the Ark Encounter

Birds of the World

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Birds of the Bible – Long-eared Owl

Long-eared Owl (Asio otus) ©Flickr Slgurossom

Long-eared Owl (Asio otus) ©Flickr Slgurossom

“And the owl, and the night hawk, and the cuckow, and the hawk after his kind, And the little owl, and the cormorant, and the great owl,” (Leviticus 11:16-17 KJV)

I trust you liked the Long-eared Owl that was on this morning’s Four Word Thursday. That was a Northern Long-eared Owl, but now just called Long-eared Owl. Owls are Birds of the Bible and mentioned several times. The “Long-eared Owl” is not named specifically, but that does not mean the verses do not include this beautifully expressive owl.

Northern Long-eared Owl

Northern Long-eared Owl (Asio otus, previously Strix otus)

“Long-eared Owls are lanky owls that often seem to wear a surprised expression thanks to long ear tufts that typically point straight up like exclamation marks. These nocturnal hunters roost in dense foliage, where their camouflage makes them hard to find, and forage over grasslands for small mammals. Long-eared Owls are nimble flyers, with hearing so acute they can snatch prey in complete darkness. In spring and summer, listen for their low, breathy hoots and strange barking calls in the night.” (1)

Long-eared Owl (Asio otus) by J Fenton

Long-eared Owl (Asio otus) by J Fenton

Subspecies; Related Species

Five subspecies generally recognized:

  • Asio o. otus (Eurasia, Azores, nw. Africa)
  • A. o. canariensis (Canary Is.)
  • A. o. graueri (Zaire, Uganda, Kenya)
  • A. o. wilsonianus (e. North America)
  • A. o. tuftsi (w. North America)

A. o. abyssinicus (highlands of Ethiopia) is now moved to full species status. Now called the Abyssinian Owl (Asio abyssinicus)

Sibley and Monroe (1990) combine A. o. graueri and A. o. abyssinicus into 1 species, Abyssinian Owl (A. abyssinicus). [This they did] Population endemic to Madagascar usually treated as full species, Madagascar Long-eared Owl (A. madagascariensis; Amadon and Bull 1988, but see Sibley and Monroe 1990).

Closest relative to otus is probably madagascariensis; Amadon and Bull (1988) suggest they are allospecies. Data from protein electrophoresis indicate that for congeners, genetic distance between Long-eared and Short-eared owls is “unusually large” (Randi et al. 1991). Hybridization not known to occur. (2) [with editing]

Long-eared Owl (Asio otus) ©WikiC

Long-eared Owl (Asio otus) ©WikiC

Here in the U.S. we would encounter  the tuffsi and wilsonianus supspecies. I am not sure which these photos represent other than they are some of the fantastic creations from their Creator, the Lord Jesus Christ. We have present several of the Birds of the Bible – Owl articles, which can be see by clicking Birds of the Bible – Owls.

These words for “Owl” are in the Scripture in Leviticus 11:16, 17:

“And the owl[H3284], and the night hawk, and the cuckow, and the hawk after his kind, And the little owl[H3563], and the cormorant, and the great owl[H3244],” (Leviticus 11:16-17 KJV)

H3284 – יענה – ya‛ănâh – yah-an-aw

Feminine of H3283, and meaning the same: – + owl.

H3563 – כּוס – kôs – koce

From an unused root meaning to hold together; a cup (as a container), often figuratively a lot (as if a potion); also some unclean bird, probably an owl (perhaps from the cup like cavity of its eye): – cup, (small) owl. Compare H3599.

H3244 – ינשׁוף ינשׁוּף – yanshûph – yanshôph – yan-shoof’, yan-shofe’

Apparently from H4398; an unclean (aquatic) bird; probably the heron (perhaps from its blowing cry, or because the night heron is meant (compare H5399)): – (great) owl.

Just thought I would give you some photos of this amazing owl, and throw in a little Bible Study. The Hebrew words are from the Strong’s Hebrew and Greek Dictionaries on my e-Sword (a free Bible program).

******Credits:

(1) Introduction to Long-eared Owl from All About Birds

(2) Marks, J. S., D. L. Evans and D. W. Holt. 1994. Long-eared Owl (Asio otus), The Birds of North America Online (A. Poole, Ed.). Ithaca: Cornell Lab of Ornithology; Retrieved from the Birds of North America Online: http://bna.birds.cornell.edu/bna/species/133 and doi:10.2173/bna.133

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Birds of the Bible – Owls

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Ian’s Bird of the Week – Southern Lapwing

Ian’s Bird of the Week – Southern Lapwing ~ by Ian Montgomery

Newsletter – 5/24/16

It is, I regret more than a month since last bird of the “week” so you have probably given me up for lost or worse, unless of course you’ve been so busy too that you haven’t noticed. Anyway, I’m now at Brisbane airport waiting for a flight, so you have my undivided attention for at least half an hour.

Southern Lapwing (Vanellus chilensis) by Ian

I’m continuing the series of global Lapwings, with a South American one, the Southern Lapwing. It’s crest gives it a superficial resemblance to the Northern Lapwing of Eurasia, but it’s not a very close relative and used to be in its own monotypic (single species) genus.

Southern Lapwing (Vanellus chilensis) by Ian

It has a wide distribution from the tip of Tierra del Fuego in the south to Nicaragua in Central America. Interestingly, there are two Lapwing species in South America (the other is the Andean Lapwing) but none in North America, odd given the almost global distribution of Lapwing species so one would wonder how their ancestors got around.

Southern Lapwing (Vanellus chilensis) by Ian

The Southern Lapwing lacks the gentle manners of its Northern counterpart and is noisy and aggressive like the Masked Lapwing of Australia. In fact, in Brazil and Chile it is often kept with wings clipped as a guard ‘dog’. Maybe I should get one to get my own back on my neighbour’s Great Dane who often wakes me in the middle of the night.

Another reason why I’ve been slack about the bird of the week is that I haven’t been doing much bird photography. That I hope is about to change. I’m on my way to Vienna at the moment with the intention of spending a week birding with my sister Gillian in Slovakia en route to my nephew’s wedding in Ireland (her son Ian), so I hope I’ll have some interesting photos for you soon.

Greetings
Ian


Lee’s Addition:

And the stork, the heron after her kind, and the lapwing, and the bat. (Lev 11:19 KJV)

I was beginning to wonder where Ian had traveled to, because, like he said, no newsletter had been sent. Glad he is busy, but miss his newsletter adventures. What a beautiful Lapwing.

Like Ian, we haven’t done much birdwatching either. Now that our wintering birds have flown north, except for our locals, birdwatching has slowed down. There are plenty of tales to tell from previous unpublished adventures. So, stay tuned!

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Birds of the Bible – American Kestrel

American Kestrel at National Aviary by Dan

American Kestrel at National Aviary by Dan

If you watched the 19 Funny Bird Videos posted recently, you saw the American Kestrel. It fascinated me that they could hold their head so steady. So, I went looking to find out how and why they do that.

Number one, the American Kestrel (Falco sparverius) is part of the Falconidae – Caracaras, Falcons family. Being part of this family, it is therefore a Bird of the Bible. They Falcon is mentioned in at least two verses. In the list of birds to not eat in Leviticus:

“the kite, and the falcon after its kind;” (Leviticus 11:14 NKJV)

The Sparrow Hawk, as it was formerly called, now the American Kestrel, is the “smallest, most numerous, and most widespread North American falcon. Of the 13 kestrel species that occur throughout the world, it is the only one found in the Western Hemisphere” (Birds of North America) They live on open areas and like to hunt from perches or even utility lines. This place of perching moves as the wind blows. Our Great Creator designed these birds to have the ability to do as you will see in the videos.

As I watched this reaction, several verses came to mind.

Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye stedfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labour is not in vain in the Lord. (1 Corinthians 15:58 KJV)

My son, let not them depart from thine eyes: keep sound wisdom and discretion: (Proverbs 3:21 KJV)

Which hope we have as an anchor of the soul, both sure and stedfast, and which entereth into that within the veil;
(Hebrews 6:19 KJV)

(Sorry, I don’t know the code to kill the music.)

But exhort one another daily, while it is called To day; lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin. For we are made partakers of Christ, if we hold the beginning of our confidence stedfast unto the end; While it is said, To day if ye will hear his voice, harden not your hearts, as in the provocation. (Hebrews 3:13-15 KJV)

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Funny Bird Videos

Bird of the Bible – Falcons

Bible Birds – Falcons

Falconidae – Caracaras, Falcons

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Birds of the Bible – Whole Armour of God

Whole Armour of God

Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. (Ephesians 6:11 KJV)

While working on an assignment for my online course, I came across this well-known verse. Started wondering if I could find enough birds that have similar names like the different parts of the Armour of God. The first photo to pop in my head was the Sword-billed Hummingbird, it has become one of my (many) favorites.  So, let’s see what we can find.

Sandhill Standing Guard Crop

Sandhill Crane Standing Guard In My Yard by Lee

(11 Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.

Blood-breasted Flowerpecker (Dicaeum sanguinolentum) ©WikiC

Blood-breasted Flowerpecker (Dicaeum sanguinolentum) ©WikiC

(12) For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.

Standardwing (Semioptera wallacii wallacii) ©Flickr Matt Binns

Standardwing (Semioptera wallacii wallacii) ©Flickr Matt Binns

(13) Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.

Crimson-breasted Shrike (Laniarius atrococcineus) ©WikiC

Crimson-breasted Shrike (Laniarius atrococcineus) ©WikiC

(14) Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness;

Blue-footed Booby (Sula nebouxii) by Ian

Blue-footed Booby (Sula nebouxii) by Ian

and the

Peaceful Dove (Geopelia striata) by Ian

Peaceful Dove (Geopelia striata) by Ian

(15) And your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace;

Purple Swamphen (Porphyrio porphyrio) Cropped ©WikiC

Purple Swamphen (Porphyrio porphyrio) Showing shield ©WikiC

and the

Fiery Minivet (Pericrocotus igneus) ©WikiC

Fiery Minivet (Pericrocotus igneus) ©WikiC

and the

Australasian Darter (Anhinga novaehollandiae) by Ian

Australasian Darter (Anhinga novaehollandiae) by Ian

(16) Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked.

White-crested Helmetshrike (Prionops plumatus) ©WikiC

White-crested Helmetshrike (Prionops plumatus) ©WikiC

and the

Sword-billed Hummingbird (Ensifera ensifera)©WikiC

Sword-billed Hummingbird (Ensifera ensifera)©WikiC

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

Inca Tern at Lowry Park Zoo by Lee

Praying Inca Tern at Lowry Park Zoo by Lee

(18) Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints;

African Openbill (Anastomus lamelligerus) by Daves BirdingPix

African Openbill (Anastomus lamelligerus) by Daves BirdingPix

(19) And for me, that utterance may be given unto me, that I may open my mouth boldly, to make known the mystery of the gospel,

Ephesians 6:11-19 KJV

Light-mantled Albatross (Phoebetria palpebrata) by Ian 5

Light-mantled Albatross (Phoebetria palpebrata) by Ian 5

Here is another Armour. The Armour of Light:

And that, knowing the time, that now it is high time to awake out of sleep: for now is our salvation nearer than when we believed. The night is far spent, the day is at hand: let us therefore cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armour of light. (Romans 13:11-12 KJV)

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Birds of the Bible

Sharing The Gospel

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Birds of the Bible – Foundation – The Ark

Ernesto Carrasco's Noah's Ark Model

Ernesto Carrasco’s Noah’s Ark Model –  Noah’s Ark Model

By faith Noah, being warned of God of things not seen as yet, moved with fear, prepared an ark to the saving of his house; by the which he condemned the world, and became heir of the righteousness which is by faith. (Hebrews 11:7 KJV)

We will continue on with the Birds of the Bible – Foundation series.

If you have not read the previous blogs:
Foundation #1 Updated  –  Foundation #2 Updated –  Foundation #3 Updated – Foundation #4 Updated

(These articles are being updated because they were written back in 2009 and needed a little dusting off. The Truths are the same, just updating the photos, etc.) This article about the Ark is a new one. It needs to go between #4 and #5, but I didn’t want to call it #4.5.

Ark with Animals ©CreationWiki

Ark with Animals ©CreationWiki

What this Foundation article is about, is the Ark itself. We read about the birds going into and out of the ark in the other Birds of the Bible Foundation articles. But what about the Ark?

Noah's Ark © SketchPort

Noah’s Ark © SketchPort

How did Noah, his family, the animals and our birds all fit in the ark? Was it like you see depicted many times in drawings with of a small boat with a giraffe sticking his head out?

Girrafe at Lowry Park Zoo by Lee

Giraffe at Lowry Park Zoo by Lee

If it was a small ark, as some suppose, it is because they do not believe God’s Word. God said He was going to destroy all flesh except those on the Ark.

And, behold, I, even I, do bring a flood of waters upon the earth, to destroy all flesh, wherein is the breath of life, from under heaven; and every thing that is in the earth shall die. But with thee will I establish my covenant; and thou shalt come into the ark, thou, and thy sons, and thy wife, and thy sons’ wives with thee. And of every living thing of all flesh, two of every sort shalt thou bring into the ark, to keep them alive with thee; they shall be male and female. Of fowls after their kind, and of cattle after their kind, of every creeping thing of the earth after his kind, two of every sort shall come unto thee, to keep them alive. (Genesis 6:17-20 KJV) (emphasis mine)

They don’t believe those verses. They think that it was only a local flood. If it were, why did the birds have to come on board? They could have just flown off to some other part of the earth. So, for those that only believe in a partial flood, a small ark with a giraffe sticking out is sufficient.

But, did those verses not say that “flood of waters upon the earth, to destroy all flesh” and “every thing that is in the earth shall die”?  Is God a liar? The exception, of course, are those with Noah in the Ark.

Ark Model at Creation Museum ©Flickr Daniel Tuttle

Ark Model at Creation Museum ©Flickr Daniel Tuttle

And it came to pass in the six hundredth and first year, in the first month, the first day of the month, the waters were dried up from off the earth: and Noah removed the covering of the ark, and looked, and, behold, the face of the ground was dry. (Genesis 8:13 KJV)

So, we need a big Ark, one that the Giraffes and birds don’t have to hang out the windows. Right? So, how big was the Ark?

“Make yourself an ark of gopherwood; make rooms in the ark, and cover it inside and outside with pitch. And this is how you shall make it: The length of the ark shall be three hundred cubits, its width fifty cubits, and its height thirty cubits. You shall make a window for the ark, and you shall finish it to a cubit from above; and set the door of the ark in its side. You shall make it with lower, second, and third decks.” (Genesis 6:14-16 NKJV)

The reason for this article is that, today, there is construction of a life size Ark underway. It is being built by the Answers in Genesis organization. The Ark Encounter, as the location will be known as, is in Williamstown, Kentucky. The planned opening is July 7, 2016. We will be going to Indiana this summer and are planning to visit the Ark during the trip.

Here are two videos showing the ark under construction. They have all those men and great technology. Noah took 120 years. During that time he was preaching and trying to get others to join him and his family.

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I trust those videos will give you a new perspective of how large the Ark actually was. There was even more room for more people to be saved, had they only believed God’s Word. We have the same issue today. John 3:16 is right before our eyes almost daily. Even ball games have banners reminding people of this promise of salvation. If they would only believe.

That whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life. For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved. He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil. (John 3:15-19 KJV)

If I took verse 19 and changed it thus; “And this is the condemnation, that AN ARK WAS come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil. (John 3:19) (My paraphrase) This is why they didn’t seek to join Noah. That is the same reason sinners refuse to be saved today.

Gospel Message

Continue to Birds of the Bible – Foundation #5 (Updated version coming soon)

Some links to some informative articles about the flood and the Ark:

Gospel Message

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Swallow-tailed Kites In The Area Again

Swallow-tailed Kite (Elanoides forficatus) ©Flickr Lawrence Crovo

Swallow-tailed Kite (Elanoides forficatus) ©Flickr Lawrence Crovo

And God created great whales, and every living creature that moveth, which the waters brought forth abundantly, after their kind, and every winged fowl after his kind: and God saw that it was good. And God blessed them, saying, Be fruitful, and multiply, and fill the waters in the seas, and let fowl multiply in the earth. (Genesis 1:21-22 KJV)

But these are they of which ye shall not eat: the eagle, and the ossifrage, and the ospray, And the glede, and the kite, and the vulture after his kind, (Deuteronomy 14:12-13 KJV)

Our Swallow-tailed Kite has been written about several times, but they are just so pretty to watch. Again, today, we had one fly out over us and make a turn which showed the split in the tail. We have very few photos of them, because they are almost a “now you see them, now you don’t” kind of bird. They just come out of no where, there they are, and then they are gone. But, OH!, when they come out, they are so neat to behold.

Our Lord, when He created this bird, within its kind, sure put some beauty and gracefulness within this Kite. These birds belong to the Accipitridae Family of Kites, Hawks, and Eagles. Basically, they are one of the Birds of Prey. They are more dangerous to flying “large insects, such as grasshoppers, crickets; small birds and eggs; and small mammals including bats. It has been observed to regularly consume fruit in Central America. It drinks by skimming the surface and collecting water in its beak.” (Wikipedia)

Swallow-tailed Kite (Elanoides forficatus) ©WikiC

Swallow-tailed Kite (Elanoides forficatus) ©WikiC

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

Here is how All About Birds describe them: “The lilting Swallow-tailed Kite has been called “the coolest bird on the planet.” With its deeply forked tail and bold black-and-white plumage, it is unmistakable in the summer skies above swamps of the Southeast. Flying with barely a wingbeat and maneuvering with twists of its incredible tail, it chases dragonflies or plucks frogs, lizards, snakes, and nestling birds from tree branches. After rearing its young in a treetop nest, the kite migrates to wintering grounds in South America.” (emphasis mine)

Swallow-tailed Kite (Elanoides forficatus) ©WikiC

Swallow-tailed Kite (Elanoides forficatus) ©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)

Just wanted to show them again so friends here in Florida and other southern states might keep their eyes to the sky. They are back, for a few months and then they will feel the call of South America and elsewhere south of here. The Lord put within the desire to migrate. So, enjoy them while you can.

now you see them, now you don’t

Here is a small slideshow of Swallow-tailed Kites:

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Previous articles:

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Gatorland’s Over-friendly Wood Stork

On our last trip to Gatorland a few weeks ago, one of the Wood Storks became almost a pest. Dan caught me leaning on the rail taking photos of the Wood Stork as he walked toward me.

Wood Stork at Gatorland Walking Toward Me by Dan

Wood Stork at Gatorland Walking Toward Me by Dan

Apparently, I was in the way, because,

Wood Stork walking on rail toward me.

Wood Stork walking on rail toward me.

Coming closer. Now you can see Dan taking the top photo.

Wood Stork walking on rail toward me.

Wood Stork walking on rail Coming toward me.

He is so close here, I could hardly focus on him. He then jumped-fly over my head. He almost knocked my cap off as I felt his feet on my cap.

Wood Stork walking on rail toward me.

Wood Stork walking on rail toward me.

He wanted on the other side and I WAS IN HIS WAY!!

Later, we came back past here, sure enough, our “over-friendly” Wood Stork was still hanging out for whatever hand out he might get.

Here are some more of Dan’s photos. Because of his long lens, either the Wood Stork or I was in focus.

Wood Stork at Gatorland Walking Past Me

Wood Stork at Gatorland Walking Past Me

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Wood Stork at Gatorland Walking Past Me

Wood Stork at Gatorland Walking Past Me

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Wood Stork at Gatorland Walking Past Me

Wood Stork at Gatorland Walking Past Me

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Now You Know Why He Was Walking Past Me

Now You Know Why He Was Walking Past Me

For every kind of beasts, and of birds, and of serpents, and of things in the sea, is tamed, and hath been tamed of mankind: (James 3:7 KJV)

This bird was used to being around people and enjoyed being “hand-fed.”

Here are a few more of my photos of this “Close Encounter With the Over-Friendly Wood Stork.”

“The wings of the ostrich wave proudly, But are her wings and pinions like the kindly stork’s? (Job 39:13 NKJV)

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Birds of the Bible – Parable of the Nest

Brown-headed Cowbird (Molothrus ater) Egg in Eastern Phoebe Nest ©WikiC

Brown-headed Cowbird (Molothrus ater) Egg in Eastern Phoebe Nest ©WikiC

Recently, I have been taking some on-line courses through the School of Biblical Apologetics with the Institute for Creation Research. Some of the lessons have been about how the Lord used parables to teach many lessons. Jesses seemed to use some of them like object lessons, where you use something currently in sight. So, here is my attempt to use a parable with birds as the object.

When you observe a bird’s nest with eggs in it and they all look alike, do you assume they are all from the same bird parents? In the picture above, it is obvious that there is a “false member of the family” in the nests.

Sometimes, they really do look the same, but there is a “Brood parasite” in among them. They look so similar that you hardly notice them. Therefore the parents accept them, sit on them, and all is well for a while.

Reed Warbler eggs with Cuckoo Egg in them ©WikiC

Reed Warbler eggs with Cuckoo Egg in them ©WikiC

But, when the eggs begin to hatch, several things can happen:

Sometimes, while the chick is in the egg, it hears its adopted parents and will actually make sounds like these parents. Therefore the parents feed them, just like its own.

Sometimes, they are so determined, that they actually shove the hosts eggs or the nestlings out of the nest.

Click to see photo of chick pushing egg out of nest.

When they do begin to grow, they become much larger than the adopted parents.

A Shiny Cowbird (Molothrus bonariensis) chick being fed by a Rufous-collared Sparrow (Zonotrichia Capensis)

A Shiny Cowbird (Molothrus bonariensis) chick being fed by a Rufous-collared Sparrow (Zonotrichia Capensis)

Sometimes they really grow.

Common Cuckoo (Cuculus canorus) being raised by a Reed Warbler©WikiC

Common Cuckoo (Cuculus canorus) being raised by a Reed Warbler©WikiC

Now for an application:

“But there were also false prophets among the people, even as there will be false teachers among you, who will secretly bring in destructive heresies, even denying the Lord who bought them, and bring on themselves swift destruction. And many will follow their destructive ways, because of whom the way of truth will be blasphemed.” (2 Peter 2:1-2 NKJV) (emphasis mine)

Some deny the Creation and the Creator of Genesis. Yet, they “accept” the other parts of the Bible. Many other truths of God’s Word are also changed or watered-down to fit the needs of the false teachers.

Those of us who are Christians, should be on our guard for false believers, who may learn to “talk the talk” and may “sound like us,” but they are actually bending or perverting the truth.

“These were more fair-minded than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness, and searched the Scriptures daily to find out whether these things were so. ” (Acts 17:11 NKJV)

“These six things the LORD hates, Yes, seven are an abomination to Him: A proud look, A lying tongue, Hands that shed innocent blood, A heart that devises wicked plans, Feet that are swift in running to evil, A false witness who speaks lies, And one who sows discord among brethren.…” (Proverbs 6:16-19 NKJV)

“Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it. “Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravenous wolves.” (Matthew 7:14-15 NKJV)

“For false christs and false prophets will rise and show signs and wonders to deceive, if possible, even the elect.” (Mark 13:22 NKJV)

Let God’s Word speak for itself. The answers are in the Word of God, if one just searches for these truths.

“The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge, But fools despise wisdom and instruction.” (Proverbs 1:7 NKJV)

“Cease listening to instruction, my son, And you will stray from the words of knowledge.” (Proverbs 19:27 NKJV)

(Bolding for emphasis on verses is mine)

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Birds of the Bible

Brood Parasite – Wikipedia

Is There a God?

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Great Horned Owl Youngsters

Great Horned Owl Youngsters at Circle B Bar Reserve by Lee

Great Horned Owl Youngsters at Circle B Bar Reserve by Lee

“And the little owl, and the cormorant, and the great owl,” (Leviticus 11:17 KJV)

This afternoon we were able to go to the Circle B Bar Reserve and watch the latest talk of the birders. Yesterday, our birding friends at church told us about these two youngsters that were stealing all the attention at the park.

It was easy to find the area, because it is roped off to keep everyone at a safe distance from the youngsters. An array of onlookers with binoculars and lots of cameras were watching and waiting for the youngsters to wake up from their naps.

Great Horned Owl Youngsters at Circle B Bar Reserve by Lee

Great Horned Owl Youngsters at Circle B Bar Reserve by Lee

Finally, a fuzzy ball appeared, and then a head popped up. Eventually, two heads were visible.

Notice how their Creator gave them just the right kind of feathers to blend in with their surroundings. Another example of the Lord’s Care for His creation.

Great Horned Owl Youngsters at Circle B Bar Reserve by Lee

Trust you will enjoy these glimpses of them. It was hard trying to catch a decent photo because they were quite a way from us. Trying to hold a zoomed in, hand-held, camera in “program mode” is a challenge. But, I am so thankful for the Lord allowing us to see some of his wonderfully created Great Horn Owl youngsters. These were my first GHO youngsters seen in the wild.

Great Horned Owl Youngsters at Circle B Bar Reserve by Lee

Do You See Them

Great Horned Owl Youngsters at Circle B Bar Reserve by Lee

Let Me Zoo In Some More. .. Do You See Them Now?

Great Horned Owl Youngsters at Circle B Bar Reserve by Lee

Zoomed In More…Do You See Them Now!

Here is a slide show of the photos in fairly decent order of how they were taken.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

I was able to shoot some video, but again, it’s a little shaky. Enjoy.

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Birds of the Bible – Owls

Strigidae – Owls

Circle B Bar Reserve

Wordless Birds

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