Black Vultures Up Close at Gatorland

Black Vulture in tree watching Stork arrival

On our last visit to Gatorland, see articles below, there wasn’t an abundance of avian wonders as on previous visits. Yet, there is always something to discover. The alligators, Flamingos, and a few Parrots are permanent residents, but the birds are free to come and go. The different families of birds build their nest during various times of the year, and late December seems to be void of nest.

Yet, not to be discouraged, the Black Vultures were staking out the trees. Soon they would create their nest, and raise their young. In late January, February, and March, the Herons and Egret will start their families.

Since there were so many of the Black Vultures around, and so close, I took some interesting photos, at least to me, of these sort of ugly, but amazing flying “landscape improvers.” :) They gather beside highways to feed on road-killed animals and other dead animals in fields, or wherever they find them.

“‘And these you shall regard as an abomination among the birds; they shall not be eaten, they are an abomination: the eagle, the vulture, the buzzard,” (Leviticus 11:13 NKJV)

Yep, I wouldn’t want to to eat one of these birds, but yet, they are beautiful in their on right. Their feathers are still very interesting, and definitely help them soar.

Black Vultures (Coragyps atratus) are members of the Cathartidae Family.

Black Vultures in tree

“The communal roost is an important focus of the social life of Black Vultures. It serves as a meeting place for adults and their young and as an assembly point for foraging groups. The communal roost also appears to function as an information center, a site where unsuccessful foragers can locate food by following roost mates to carcasses.” (©Birds of the World)

They were okay until a Wood Stork landed

Wood Stork arriving in the Vulture’s Tree

on “their” tree:

Black Vultures in tree watching Stork arrival

One of the Vultures tried to “stare” the Stork down.

Black Vultures in tree watching Stork arrival

Black Vulture in tree watching Stork arrival

Further along the path, there was a another tree of vultures that caught my attention. It was right along the boardwalk and I was able to observe them from a closer range. Here is a slideshow of these. I was amazed watching this Black Vulture preening up-close.

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What an amazing Creator who provides for each of His Avian Wonders.

Birds of the Bible – Vulture

Cathartidae – New World Vultures

Other Gatorland Post from the December 30th visit:

  1. Flamingo Filtering at Gatorland – 12/30/20
  2. Gator Tail Anyone?
  3. Our Gatorland Welcome 12-30-20
  4. Put Your Best Foot Forward

Sharing The Gospel

Gator Tail Anyone?

Here in Florida, there are some restaurants that serve Gator Tail. Usually, it is served as an appetizer.

Gator Tail Appetizer ©Skipper Fish Camp

While we were walking around Gatorland on our last trip, I noticed some Black Vultures very near the end of an alligator. They were across the pond, so I zoomed in to see what they were doing.

I’m thinking to myself:

#1 – These birds are crazy being that close to the gator.

#2 Maybe they are picking bugs or weeds off of its tail.

Cropped after I got home.

Before I tell more, let me continue on with the rest of the visit. When we got to my favorite part where the birds ride on the alligators (See Gatorland’s Taxi Service), I was again videoing the activities. I noticed on the little island that some more Black Vultures were again at the tail of another large alligator.

Egret on Gator Taxi and Vultures at Gator’s Tail by Lee

Vulture at Gator’s Tail – Zoomed by Lee

Vulture at Gator’s Tail – Zoomed by Lee

Here is a crop of the crop. You can see him actually eating the meat right out of a living alligator. He couldn’t even wait for them to batter and fry up a piece for him.

Zoom of a zoom

I also took a video of some of this:

Now I see why Vultures are on the “Do Not Eat” list! They are a Bird of the Bible after all.

“‘These, moreover, you shall detest among the birds; they are abhorrent, not to be eaten: the eagle and the vulture and the buzzard, and the kite and the falcon in its kind, every raven in its kind,” (Leviticus 11:13-15 NASB)

Birds of the Bible – Vulture

Birds of the Bible

Good News Tracts – Various Topics

 

Birds of the Bible – Deuteronomy 14:16-18 V (WYC)

Sharp-tailed Sandpiper (Calidris acuminata) ©WikiC

“16 a falcon, and a swan, and a ciconia,
17 and a dipper, a porphyrio, and a rearmouse, a cormorant,
18 and a calidris, all in their kind; also a lapwing and a bat.” Deuteronomy 14:16-18 Wycliffe Bible (WYC)

As we conclude our investigation of the interesting interpretation of these three verses from Wycliffe’s Bible, another amazing critter is encountered. We have been looking at these verse in these recent blogs:

Normally, these verses would read something similar to this:

Deuteronomy 14:16-18 KJV
(16)  The little owl, and the great owl, and the swan,
(17)  And the pelican, and the gier eagle, and the cormorant,
(18)  And the stork, and the heron after her kind, and the lapwing, and the bat.

Or maybe the New American Standard’s Version:

Deuteronomy 14:16-18 NASB
(16) the little owl, the great owl, the white owl,
(17) the pelican, the carrion vulture, the cormorant,
(18) the stork, and the heron in their kinds, and the hoopoe and the bat.

Webster Dictionary 1913 says:

(1): (n.) A bare-legged person; — a contemptuous appellation formerly given to the Scotch Highlanders, in allusion to their bare legs.
(2): (n.) The fieldfare.
(3): (n.) A common Old World limicoline bird (Totanus calidris), having the legs and feet pale red. The spotted redshank (T. fuscus) is larger, and has orange-red legs. Called also redshanks, redleg, and clee.

If this older dictionary entry indicates this genus, then it would refer to the Redshank clan.

Common Redshank (Tringa totanus) ©WikiC

Common Redshank (Tringa totanus) ©WikiC

Or maybe the Stork would be referred to:

Wood Stork at Gatorland Walking Past Me

My personal opinion, would be that the stork is not the calidris. But my opinion does not matter, only what the Greek or Hebrew of the original languages means. In this case, I have no clue other than Do Not Eat them. Thanksgiving is next week, and there is no plan to have a stuffed Stork or one of the Redshanks or Calidis clan on the table.

Today, as Christians, we are not “forbidden” to eat any certain birds, BUT, there are some of the Lord’s Avian Wonders that shouldn’t be eaten. They could be very dangerous to our health. COMMON SENSE still makes great sense.

I trust you have found this investigation of the Wycliffe’s Version of these verses interesting and informative. It definitely had me scratching my head at times. It helped me dig into the Bible and the Bird families to try to find answers.

See the Calidris clan here: Calidris

Birds of the Bible

Gospel Message

 

Birds of the Bible – Deuteronomy 14:16-18 IV (WYC)

Rearmouse (Vespertilio murinus) ©WikiC

Rearmouse or Parti-colored Bat (Vespertilio murinus) ©WikiC

“16 a falcon, and a swan, and a ciconia,
17 and a dipper, a porphyrio, and a rearmouse, a cormorant,
18 and a calidris, all in their kind; also a lapwing and a bat.” Deuteronomy 14:16-18 Wycliffe Bible (WYC)

As we continue our investigation of the interesting interpretation of these three verses from Wycliffe’s Bible, we find another amazing critter. We have been looking at these verse in these recent blogs:

Normally, these verses would read something similar to this:

Deuteronomy 14:16-18 KJV
(16)  The little owl, and the great owl, and the swan,
(17)  And the pelican, and the gier eagle, and the cormorant,
(18)  And the stork, and the heron after her kind, and the lapwing, and the bat.

Or maybe the New American Standard’s Version:

Deuteronomy 14:16-18 NASB
(16) the little owl, the great owl, the white owl,
(17) the pelican, the carrion vulture, the cormorant,
(18) the stork, and the heron in their kinds, and the hoopoe and the bat.

Notice that all three versions us the bat in verse 18, yet now we find in Wycliff’s verse 17 a rearmouse mentioned.

According to information from the internet, the rearmouse is an archaic word used for a type of bat.

Parti-colored Bat (Vespertilio murinus) ©Flickr Rudo Jurecek

Parti-colored Bat (Vespertilio murinus) ©Flickr Rudo Jurecek

The parti-coloured bat or rearmouse (Vespertilio murinus) is a species of vesper bat that lives in temperate Eurasia.

Their twittering call, similar to a bird’s call, are to be heard particularly in the autumn during the mating season. The parti-coloured bat has a body size of 4.8–6.4 centimetres (1.9–2.5 in) with a wingspan of 26–33 cm (10–13 in), and a weight of 11–24 grams (0.39–0.85 oz). Its name is derived from its fur, which has two colours. Its back (dorsal side) is red to dark-brown, with silver-white-frosted hair. The ventral side is white or grey. The ears, wings and face are black or dark brown. The wings are narrow. The ears are short, broad and roundish. The highest known age is 12 years.

The Websters 1913 addition has this about it:

Reremouse
(1):
(n.) The leather-winged bat (Vespertilio murinus).
(2):
(n.) A rearmouse.

Parti-coloured bat or Rearmouse Wikipedia

This version, Wycliffe’s Bible Version, was taken from Bible Gateways site.

The Bat has already been written about in these two articles:

Birds of the Bible

What is the Gospel?

Birds of the Bible – Deuteronomy 14:16-18 III (WYC)

Framed Purple Gallinule by Dan

Purple Gallinule (Porphyrio martinica) by Dan

“16 a falcon, and a swan, and a ciconia,
17 and a dipper, a porphyrio, and a rearmouse, a cormorant,
18 and a calidris, all in their kind; also a lapwing and a bat.” Deuteronomy 14:16-18 Wycliffe Bible (WYC)

Now here is an interesting interpretation of these 3 verses. We are going to look at these verse in a few blogs. Normally, these verses would read something similar to this:

Deuteronomy 14:16-18 KJV
(16)  The little owl, and the great owl, and the swan,
(17)  And the pelican, and the gier eagle, and the cormorant,
(18)  And the stork, and the heron after her kind, and the lapwing, and the bat.

Purple Swamphen (Porphyrio porphyrio) ©WikiC

Purple Swamphen (Porphyrio porphyrio) ©WikiC

or like this:

Deuteronomy 14:16-18 NKJV
(16)  the little owl, the screech owl, the white owl,
(17)  the jackdaw, the carrion vulture, the fisher owl,
(18)  the stork, the heron after its kind, and the hoopoe and the bat.

Purple Swamphen (Porphyrio porphyrio) by Bob-Nan

Or maybe the New American Standard’s Version:

Deuteronomy 14:16-18 NASB
(16) the little owl, the great owl, the white owl,
(17) the pelican, the carrion vulture, the cormorant,
(18) the stork, and the heron in their kinds, and the hoopoe and the bat.

Purple Swamphen (Porphyrio porphyrio) ©WikiC parent and chick

In the first post about the Wycliffe translation, the Dipper was mentioned. Part II was about the Circonia or Stork. Now, let’s look at the third bird – Part III in these verses from the Wycliffe’s

“The Porphyrio is the swamphen or swamp hen bird genus in the rail family. It includes some smaller species which are usually called “purple gallinules”, and which are sometimes separated as genus Porphyrula or united with the gallinules proper (or “moorhens”) in Gallinula. The Porphyrio gallinules are distributed in the warmer regions of the world.”

“The genus Porphyrio was introduced by the French zoologist Mathurin Jacques Brisson in 1760 with the western swamphen (Porphyrio porphyrio) as the type species. The genus name Porphyrio is the Latin name for “swamphen”, meaning “purple”.

Another point about this name Porphyrio that the name used for the Order and the Family use a similar name:

Check out a previous article in more depth about these birds: Name Study of the Swamphen or Waterhen

This version, Wycliffe, was taken from Bible Gateways site.

Birds of the Bible

Wordless Birds

Do Not Eat The Gripe Or The Aliet!

PEREGRINE FALCON (National Park Service photo / public domain)

Here are two more birds that are listed on the “Do Not Eat” list. A Gripe and an Aliet.

Leviticus 11:13 These things be of (the) fowls which ye shall not eat, and shall be eschewed of you (and shall be shunned by you); an eagle, and a gripe, [and] an aliet,
Deuteronomy 14:12 (but) eat ye not unclean birds, that is, an eagle, and a gripe, and an aliet,
These verses are in the Wycliffe Bible (WYC) version. “The earliest existing edition is from 1525, but manuscripts of that only have a part of Matthew. Of the whole New Testament, the earliest manuscripts available are from 1526. Old Testament books are from later, 1530’s for some. This means that these two birds mentioned, the Gripe and the Aliet, were the names they were called by back then. Languages change over hundreds of years.

Australian Hobby by Ian Montgomery

Interesting note about how these birds are listed in the “Do Not Eat List” Here is what the Expositor’s Bible Commentary (Abridged Edition): Old Testament says:

13-19 There was no easy rule of thumb for clean birds. A negative list is given that in cases is difficult to translate with certainty. The different modern versions vary in detail. In general carrion-eating and fish-eating birds were forbidden, just as they are not used for food today. Chickens are not mentioned in the OT. The eating of bird eggs and the mother bird together is forbidden in Deuteronomy 22:6, apparently for conservation reasons. If the eggs are taken, the mother bird will lay more; but if the mother bird is taken, there will be no more eggs! Doves, their eggs, and their young were eaten.

After doing some searching on Google, the Gripe doesn’t seem to be a recognizable bird today. When searching for the Aliet, After just about giving up, this interesting article was found:

Hearldry is a displaying of different Coats of Arms. The bird in on this Crest or Coat of Arms is the Aliet:

These verses in other translations indicate some type of birds of prey. That is what is article is saying also. If you can read the “old English”, notice that it mentions “This Fowl hath her Tallons or Pounces inwardly crooked like a hook.” That is a good description of a Hawk, Falcon, or some other type of bird of prey. “and is called in Latine [Latin], Falco (faith Calepine). Falco is the genus for Falcons and includes 15 Kestrels, 22 Falcons and 4 Hobbys.

It also mentions the “Alietus is a little Fowl that preyeth upon small birds…”

American Kestrel by AestheticPhotos

Falcons, Kestrels and Hobbies are part of the Falconidae Family.

 

Porphyrion On The “Do Not Eat” List?

Is The Porphyrion On The Do Not Eat List? This is one of the reasons we post a Disclaimer about the different Bible versions. When the Birds of the Bible articles were written several years ago, I used my e-Sword program to search for the names of different species of birds on the “Do Not Eat List.” Now, the BibleGateway Bibles are also available for me to use. Time to check these new resources to see if any other name of bird is in one of their Bible translations.

I started with Leviticus 11:18 and Deuteronomy 14:17 [The beginning of the “Do Not Eat List” of birds] Looking through the list, Porphyrion caught my attention.

When I first started searching this word out on Google, here is what came up: “In Greek mythology, Porphyrion (Ancient Greek: Πορφυρίων) was one of the Gigantes (Giants)…” Whoa! That’s not a bird, but a Greek Mythology character, and not a very nice one. That is the reason for this title.

Purple Swamphen (Porphyrio porphyrio) ©WikiC

Purple Swamphen (Porphyrio porphyrio) ©WikiC

Ah! But further researching found that the Porphyrion is actually another name for the Swamphen. Notice the scientific name in the photo.

Porphyrio porphyrio. That is most likely why the Douay-Rheims 1899 [American edition DRA] translated it that way. They are the only English Bible that translates the bird this way.

They translated the two verses as:

“And the swan, and the bittern, and the porphyrion,” Leviticus 11:18 DRA

“And the cormorant, the porphyrion, and the night crow,” Deuteronomy 14:17 DRA
also
“and a dipper, a porphyrio, and a rearmouse, a cormorant,” WYC [Here’s a verse to check out :) ]

Purple Gallinule at Lake Hollingsworth by Lee

Here is a bit about this Swamphen family:

“Porphyrio is the swamphen or swamp hen bird genus in the rail family. It includes some smaller species which are usually called “purple gallinules”, and which are sometimes separated as genus Porphyrula or united with the gallinules proper (or “moorhens”) in Gallinula. The Porphyrio gallinules are distributed in the warmer regions of the world.

The genus Porphyrio was introduced by the French zoologist Mathurin Jacques Brisson in 1760 with the western swamphen (Porphyrio porphyrio) as the type species. The genus name Porphyrio is the Latin name for “swamphen”, meaning “purple“. [Wikipedia – Swamphen]

Purple Gallinule by Lee at Lake Parker 1-7-12

Purple Gallinule by Lee at Lake Parker 1-7-12

Searching this blog, there is a previous post written about the porphyrion or Swamphen in 2013. Birds of the Bible – Name Study – Swamphen or Waterhen
Stay tuned for more searches of the Birds of the Bible – Do Not Eat list!
[Yes, I believe in using the main translations of the Bible; like KJV, NKJV, and NASB, but these searches are for just finding different birds to write about. God created all the birds, and I find it interesting to see how these birds are translated.]