Birds of the Bible – Alpine Swifts

Alpine Swift (Tachymarptis melba) by Ian

Alpine Swift (Tachymarptis melba) by Ian

Even the stork in the heavens Knows her appointed times; And the turtledove, the swift, and the swallow Observe the time of their coming. But My people do not know the judgment of the LORD. (Jeremiah 8:7 NKJV)

While reading my latest issue of the Birdwatchers Digest, I came across and interesting note about a recent study of the behavior Alpine Swifts that was published in 2013. It was published in the Nature Communications.

“Although observers have claimed that some swifts may stay on the wing for almost their entire lives—except for breeding—there was no solid evidence of this. Then, a team of researchers caught six alpine swifts in Switzerland, tagged them with data loggers (to record the birds’ acceleration and location), and were able to recapture three of them the next year, upon their return from Africa.” (BWD)

After analyzing data, they found that “the swifts appear to fly nonstop when they aren’t breeding. (The swifts eat insects in mid-air, of course, so they don’t starve.) The actual time totals up to a phenomenal 200 days aloft.” (BWD) This posses another question. Do the Swifts actually sleep on the wing? There were indications that this was happening.

The articles go on, but I find this truly amazing. Our Creator used such Wisdom when He made these Swifts. Not only are they able to eat on the wing, but also catch a nap. Wow!


Alpine Swift (Tachymarptis melba) by Ian

Alpine Swift (Tachymarptis melba) by Ian

Day unto day uttereth speech, and night unto night sheweth knowledge. (Psalms 19:2 KJV)

Half of brain asleep article – Interesting Things – Not So Bird-Brained



Interesting Things – Not So Bird-Brained

Great Blue Heron (Ardea herodias) Sleeping by Lee at Circle B

Great Blue Heron (Ardea herodias) Sleeping by Lee

NOT SO BIRD-BRAINED ~ by Creation Moments

So God created . . . every winged bird according to its kind. And God saw that it was good. (Genesis 1:21)

How do you take a much-needed nap or get a good night’s sleep when you must be alert to danger? Human beings designate people to stay awake and watch for danger when they sleep. Then, they set up warning systems.

Since birds are much more vulnerable to danger, God gave them the ability to do these things on a simple scale, and then He gave them one more amazing gift. Many birds are able to put half of their brain to sleep, while the other half stays awake and alert. The eye that serves the sleeping half even closes, while the eye that serves the waking half of the brain stays alert, searching for danger. After the first sleeping half is nicely rested, it wakes up, and the other half goes to sleep. Of course, these birds can also put both sides of the brain to sleep at the same time, just as we do. Whales, seals and dolphins are among the non-birds that can half-brain sleep as well.

Evidence of the clever design of this half-brain sleep ability can be seen in the fact that where two birds sleep next to each other, each bird will put the half of the brain that faces its partner to sleep. Once that half is rested, they change places, so the other half of their brain can sleep.

When Scripture tells us that God looked at His creation and declared it “good,” God’s standard for good is perfection. His ingenious design, which would allow birds to protect themselves even when sin and death entered the creation, is part of the goodness of God’s creation.

I thank You, Lord, that You made a creation perfect and so beautiful that even in could not completely destroy it. Amen.

S. Milius, Half-asleep birds choose which half dozes, Science News, February 6, 1999, v.155, p.86

©Creation Moments