Penguin Disappearing – Creation Moments

King Penguin (Aptenodytes patagonicus) 5 by Ian

King Penguin (Aptenodytes patagonicus) by Ian

“And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth.” Genesis 1:26

Penguins are disappearing. Don’t worry – it’s not all of them that are disappearing. But the world’s largest colony of king penguins appears to be only 10% the size it was 50 years ago.

The colony, which lives on Île aux Cochons in the southern Indian Ocean, is quite difficult to count. Nevertheless, surveys over the years have shown that it has shrunk dramatically. Reasons given for the decimation include climate change and outbreaks of diseases such as avian cholera.

Penguins are among our favorite animals. Many of us, when we go to the zoo, will make our way quickly to see the penguins. We love to see the endearing, adorable way they walk and then marvel at their grace as they “fly” through the water. Some species of penguins have remarkable habits. One unsubstantiated urban myth about penguins in the Falkland Islands suggests that they watch the overflying planes of the Royal Air Force so intently that they eventually fall over backwards! One comedian complained about the Emperor Penguins, saying that they have the ability to make us feel complete failures as fathers.

Of course, not all penguins are dying out. We are referring to one colony of one species. But does it matter? The answer must be that, yes, we ought to have a concern. We are used to opposing climate change mythology and, therefore, sometimes go to the other extreme, forgetting that God gave us a stewardship to look after this world and protect it.

Prayer: Thank You, Lord, for the stewardship that You gave the human race over creation. We pray for those involved in conservation, that You would raise up those whose work is guided fully by You. Amen.

Ref: CNRS. “Largest king penguin colony has shrunk nearly 90%.” ScienceDaily, 30 July 2018. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2018/07/180730120408.htm>. Image: CC BY-SA 3.0.

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Penguins - Gentoo Front-King Middle-Rockhoopers Back

Penguins – Gentoo Front – King Middle – Rockhoopers Back by Lee

Disappearing Penguins – Creation Moments

Penguin Eggs Tragedy by Dr. Johnson

Ian’s Bird of the Week – King Penguin

Where Did They Go and Why? Bird Mystery

Western Osprey (Pandion haliaetus) by Lee at Honeymoon Is SP

Western Osprey (Pandion haliaetus) by Lee

On Seahorse Key in Florida, a very popular nesting spot was vacated en mass in May. Now the avian biologist from U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and others are trying to find out why and where they went. Here are some of the quotes from different articles, listed below.

Seahorse Key, a 150-acre mangrove-covered dune off Florida’s Gulf Coast, a key that “fell eerily quiet all at once”.

“It’s a dead zone now,” said Vic Doig, a U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service biologist. “This is where the largest bird colony on the Gulf Coast of Florida used to be.”

Wood Storks in the Rookery at Gatorland

Wood Storks in the Rookery at Gatorland

Another quote, “It’s not uncommon for birds to abandon nests,” said Peter Frederick, a University of Florida wildlife biologist who has studied Florida’s birds for nearly 30 years. “But, in this case, what’s puzzling is that all of the species did it all at once.”

“Any rookery that’s persisted for decades as one of the largest colonies is incredibly important,” said Janell Brush, an avian researcher with the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. “It’s quite a large colony. There had to be some intense event that would drive all these birds away.” “Some of the Seahorse birds seem to have moved to a nearby island, but they’re just a fraction of the tens of thousands of birds that would normally be nesting on the key right now, Doig added.

They have even checked with the military to see if they may have experimented with something. They say that they were not involved.

Whatever scared the birds that much must have been something very unusual. The Lord knows all about it and gave the birds the sense to get out of harms way. It is a shame that so many eggs and little ones were abandoned.

Wood Storks Flying

Wood Storks Flying

There is a time in the future when all the birds will flee:

I beheld the mountains, and, lo, they trembled, and all the hills moved lightly. I beheld, and, lo, there was no man, and all the birds of the heavens were fled. (Jeremiah 4:24-25 KJV)

I will take up a weeping and wailing for the mountains, And for the dwelling places of the wilderness a lamentation, Because they are burned up, So that no one can pass through; Nor can men hear the voice of the cattle. Both the birds of the heavens and the beasts have fled; They are gone. (Jeremiah 9:10 NKJV)

One article even questioned whether climate change did it. That one is a little far-fetched. Over time, maybe, over-night, I doubt it.

We can’t ask the birds directly, but as they continue to investigate this mystery, there will be lessons learned. Too bad we can’t ask the birds, but we can observe them.

“But now ask the beasts, and they will teach you; And the birds of the air, and they will tell you; (Job 12:7 NKJV)

Here are some of the articles about this mystery:

Bird mystery: Thousands disappear and abandon eggs, nests on island off Florida’s Gulf Coast,
Published July 07, 2015 Associated Press

Large Florida bird colony suddenly a “dead zone”, July 7, 2015

Bird mystery: Thousands disappear and abandon eggs, nests on island off Florida’s Gulf Coast, July 7, 2015

Tens fo thousands of birds…, July 7, 2015

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Birds of the Bible

Birds of the World

Wordless Birds

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