Birds of the Bible – Eagle Hair and Bird Claws

Bald Eagle at Lowry Park Zoo by Lee

Bald Eagle at Lowry Park Zoo by Lee

That very hour the word was fulfilled concerning Nebuchadnezzar; he was driven from men and ate grass like oxen; his body was wet with the dew of heaven till his hair had grown like eagles’ feathers and his nails like birds’ claws. (Daniel 4:33 NKJV)

This Birds of the Bible Scripture was mentioned over five years ago and it’s time to update and review. “Repetition aids learning” they say. Also, I am currently reading through Daniel again.

Many times the birds mentioned in the Bible are listed as “clean or unclean” or as an “object lesson” to teach some truth. This time the mention of Eagle feathers and birds’ claws are used as a description of a man’s appearance and there is a lesson to be learned here.

So, who was this man? It is actually a very important king, King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon. The information about the King is found throughout the book of Daniel. To make the story short, the king had a dream and wanted an interpretation of that dream. Not only did he want his dreams interpreted, but he wanted the interpreter to tell him what the dream was about. The wise men and others told the king that was impossible, so the king commanded to kill them. Daniel prayed to God that He would reveal the dream and it’s interpretation to him so he could tell it to the King. God answered that prayer and Daniel was able to reveal it to King Nebuchadnezzar.

King Nebuchadnezzar was the first world ruler and God had given the king great power. Later on, the king’s pride takes over and he thinks he has made this kingdom and does not give God the credit. He even has a great statue made of himself and demands that all fall down and worship him.

Back to making this short. In Daniel chapter 4 the king has another dream and Daniel (Belteshazzar) prays for revelation and again interprets the dream. Daniel 4:9 to 4:18 tells the dream. (Birds are mentions several times in it.) Then Daniel interprets the dream in Daniel 4:19-33. Basically, the Most High is going to let the king learn humility and get rid of the pride that he has.

The king spoke, saying, “Is not this great Babylon, that I have built for a royal dwelling by my mighty power and for the honor of my majesty? (Daniel 4:30 NKJV, emphasis mine)

For seven years, or time periods, will his kingdom be departed from him. He will be out in the field, “eating grass like oxen” and “until you know that the Most High rules in the kingdom of men, and gives it to whomever He chooses.” It is during this time that his hair will grow like “eagles’ feathers and his nails like birds’ claws.”

Sea Eagle (Haliaeetus pelagicus) Feet by Lee at National Aviary

Sea Eagle (Haliaeetus pelagicus) Feet by Lee at National Aviary

That was the short version, now before we find out if the King learned from this, we will go a little further.

Summarized Bible – “Conclusion: God has power to humble the haughtiest of men who would in their pride act in competition with Him. Those so confident of their own sufficiency will be brought sooner or later to own God’s dominion over them and their own utter weakness. Many have been brought to themselves by being made beside themselves.”

Harpy Eagle (Harpia harpyja) by Lee at Zoo Miami 2014

Harpy Eagle (Harpia harpyja) by Lee at Zoo Miami 2014

Daniel & the Revelation by Uriah Smith: “The King’s Self-exaltation and Humiliation.–Nebuchadnezzar failed to profit by the warning he had received, yet God bore with him twelve months longer before the blow fell. All that time he cherished pride in his heart, and at length it reached a climax beyond which God could not suffer it to pass. The king was walking in the palace, and as he looked forth upon the splendors of that wonder of the world, great Babylon, the beauty of kingdoms, he forgot the source of all his strength, and greatness, and exclaimed, “Is not this great Babylon, that I have built?” Archaeologists have found the ruins of that ancient city, which Sir Frederic Kenyon describes in the following sentences:

“These confirmed the generally wrecked character of the site, but also revealed much as to its plan, architecture, and ornamentation. The buildings found were almost wholly the work of Nebuchadnezzar, who rebuilt the previous city most extensively, his own enormous palace (‘this great Babylon that I have build for the house of the kingdom by the might of my power and for the honor of my majesty’) being the most conspicuous building of all.” [3]

The time had come for Nebuchadnezzar’s humiliation. A voice from heaven again announced the threatened judgement, and divine providence proceeded immediately to execute it. His reason departed. No longer the pomp and glory of his great city charmed him. God with a touch of His finger took away his capability to appreciate and enjoy it. He forsook the dwellings of men, and sought a home and companionship among the beasts of the field.”
[3] Sir Frederic Kenyon, The Bible and Archaeology, p. 126.

Long nails like a bird's claws

Long nails like a bird’s claws

Day by Day by F. B. Meyer – “But how marvelous the contrast between those proud and vaunting words, and the ascriptions of humble homage and praise in Dan_4:34-37! If God could produce such a result on the haughty king of Babylon, is there any sinner He cannot subdue? May not the stern discipline to which some lives are subjected be intended to subdue their proud wills and bring them to similar confessions?”

Did King Nebuchadnezzar learn his lesson?

And at the end of the time I, Nebuchadnezzar, lifted my eyes to heaven, and my understanding returned to me; and I blessed the Most High and praised and honored Him who lives forever: For His dominion is an everlasting dominion, And His kingdom is from generation to generation. All the inhabitants of the earth are reputed as nothing; He does according to His will in the army of heaven And among the inhabitants of the earth. No one can restrain His hand Or say to Him, “What have You done?” At the same time my reason returned to me, and for the glory of my kingdom, my honor and splendor returned to me. My counselors and nobles resorted to me, I was restored to my kingdom, and excellent majesty was added to me. Now I, Nebuchadnezzar, praise and extol and honor the King of heaven, all of whose works are truth, and His ways justice. And those who walk in pride He is able to put down. (Daniel 4:34-37 NKJV)

May we all watch our pride and realize that:

“A man’s pride will bring him low, But the humble in spirit will retain honor.” (Proverbs 29:23 NKJV)


Birds of the Bible

Birds of the Bible – Hair Like Eagle’s Feathers – original

Changed From The Inside Out


Skinny As A Rail? Not Me!

Clapper Rail (Rallus crepitans) ©WikiC

Clapper Rail (Rallus crepitans) ©WikiC

Skinny as a rail? Not me!

~ James J. S. Johnson

“But when thou art bidden, go and sit down in the lowest room; that when he that bade thee cometh, he may say unto thee, Friend, go up higher: then shalt thou have respect in the presence of them that sit at meat with thee.”    (Luke 14:10)

Luzon Bleeding-heart by Dan


Is it really advantageous to be frequently noticed?  Is having a “low profile” a prudent practice?  Surely when someone gets a reputation, for being a “show-off”, the spotlight becomes a disadvantage.

When I was a teenager I was called “skinny as a rail”.  Once I arrived at age 20, however, for some reason I stopped hearing that description.  Of course, I blame my weight gain on getting married to a wonderful cook (who, for 3-dozen-plus years, has made eating an ongoing adventure!)!  Actually, I am not too far from being double the weight that I had, 121 pounds, when I got married!

Hmmm – maybe exercise has something to do with it, too.  It’s been a long time since someone said (of me), “he’s so skinny, if he turned sideways we couldn’t see him!”  It is the literal truth that my wife has been with me “through thick and thin”.

But this is supposed to be about birds.

Railway ©WikiC

Railway ©WikiC

So now we should consider something that Robert and Alice Lippson, both ecologists, have to say about being “skinny as a rail”.

“’As thin as a rail’—is it the narrow steel ribbon of a railroad track or the slim boards that make up a fence?  Just where did that old saw come from, anyway?  It pertains to certain members of the Rallidae family, the rails, which also includes coots and gallinules.  The rails have thin, compressed bodies that allow them to thread their way through seemingly impenetrable thickets and literally to disappear into the marsh. … Rails are usually brown and patterned or mottled with white [feathers], while coots are slate or soot colored.  Rails are found in the [Chesapeake] Bay wetlands year-round.”

[Quoting Alice Jane Lippson & Robert L. Lippson, LIFE IN THE CHESAPEAKE BAY:   An Illustrated Guide to the Fishes, Invertebrates, Plants, Birds, and Other Inhabitants of the Bays and Inlets from Cape Cod to Cape Hatteras, 3rd Edition (Baltimore:  The Johns Hopkins University Press, 2006), page 232.]

Perhaps the most prominent rail in the Chesapeake Bay region is the Marsh Hen, also called the “Clapper Rail” (Rallus crepitans, a/k/a Rallus longirostris), known for its harsh-sounding clattering vocalizations [klek-klek-klek-klek-klek] that almost sounds like rattling or rapid clapping.

The Clapper Rail is routinely found in salt marshes and some freshwater marshes on America’s East Coast, from Massachusetts to Florida, plus in wetlands bordering California’s inland Salton Sea, and even along the banks of the lower parts of the Colorado River.  [See John Bull & John Farrand, Jr., NATIONAL AUDUBON SOCIETY FIELD GUIDE TO NORTH AMERICAN BIRDS, EASTERN REGION, revised edition (New York:  Alfred A. Knopf, 1994), page 455.]

Have I ever seen one?  Probably not.  But that’s not unusual, according to Lippson & Lippson, who say that hearing one is more likely than seeing one, especially due to their habit of being more active at night.  [Lippson & Lippson, page 232.]  But, if you do see a Clapper Rail, it might not realize you are watching!

Clapper Rail (Rallus crepitans) ©WikiC

Clapper Rail (Rallus crepitans) ©WikiC

“Clapper rails are secretive birds and are usually not seen unless forced off the reed floor by high tides.  Then they are frequently seen along the edge of the marsh and even along nearby roads.  Even though they are in the open and quite visible, clapper rails apparently think they are still in the marsh, unseen and safe.  Like the least bittern, they are reluctant fliers and when flushed will make brief [airborne] sorties, legs dangling, then drop and disappear into the marsh vegetation.  Curiously enough, rails are capable of making long migratory flights.  The best way to ‘see’ a rail is with your ears:  listen for the clattering “kek-kek-kek”, especially in the early evening and at dawn.  The clapper rail is widely distributed throughout the [Chesapeake] Bay.”  [Quoting Lippson & Lippson, page 232.]

So much for keeping a low profile, especially when perils are near!  If you can be inconspicuous, it’s usually to your advantage, — but, if not, it’s good to have a Plan B (like the Clapper Rail’s getaway response) if you need one.

Meanwhile, don’t forget the lesson of Luke 14:10.  Routinely assume that you should take a “low profile”.  If you are directed “up” (i.e., promoted to a “higher” responsibility), so be it,  —  trusting God to guide you, use the “high profile” opportunity to honor God.  Yet don’t forget: the Clapper Rail strategy has its merits  –  if you are inconspicuous you are less likely to become somebody’s target!


Rallidae – Rails, Crakes and Coots


James J. S. Johnson

Good News

Clapper Rail by Lee at Merritt Island NWR


“Flag That Bird!” (Part 5)

Black Swan ©WikiC
“Flag That Bird!”  (Part 5)

by James J. S. Johnson

Better is the end of a thing than the beginning thereof: and the patient in spirit is better than the proud in spirit.  (Ecclesiastes 7:8)

This is the fifth and last article in this “Flag that bird!” series, on various birds that appear on national flags.  (In other words, this is this mini-series’ “swan song”.)

All of us know enthusiasm-fueled folks who proudly launch into a new project – yet they soon falter, when the initial excitement fizzles, and they somehow fail to employ the prolonged patience to follow a long-term project through to completion.  (But, as we all know, “a job half-done is a job undone”.)  Thankfully, this blogsite mini-series, on “flag birds”, has now reached its proper closure!  Of course, there are other flags (such as state and provincial flags) that depict birds, but this set of articles has predominantly focused on birds portrayed on national flags.  Accordingly, as promised before, this final sequel features two huge birds, a swan and a crane, plus another bird whose identity is less than fully certain.

For a quick review, these vexillology-related birds were previously featured, as follows:

Part 1, posted at Flag That Bird – Part 1  — Belgium’s Wallonian Chicken (Gallus gallus domesticus); Portugal’s Northern Goshawk (Accipiter gentilis); Burma’s Green Peafowl (Pavo muticus); and Dominica’s Sisserou Parrot (Amazona imperialis);

Part 2, posted at Flag That Bird – Part 2  — the British Antarctic Territory’s Emperor Penguin (Aptenodytes forsteri), and the Saint Helena Plover, a/k/a Saint Helena’s skinny-legged “Wirebird” (Charadrius sanctaehelenae);

Part 3, posted at Flag That Bird – Part 3  — Kiribati’s Great Frigatebird Emperor Penguin (Fregata minor); and

Part 4, posted at Flag That Bird – Part 4  — Papua New Guinea’s Raggiana Bird-of-Paradise (Paradisaea raggiana, f/k/a Gerrus paradisaea), and the ubiquitous Dove, best illustrated by the common pigeon, a/k/a Rock Dove (Columbia livia).

In this article, three remaining birds will be introduced:  (1) the black swan of Western Australia (Cygnus atratus); (2) the black and white “piping shrike” of South Australia, the exact identity of which is questionable, although this article will assume it is the same bird as the Australian magpie, perhaps more particularly the subspecies known as Cracticus tibicen telonocua, f/k/a Gymnorhina tibicen leuconota (e.g., by explorer Charles Sturt); and (3) Uganda’s crested crane (Balearica regulorum gibbericeps).

Black  Swan (Cygnus atratus).

Black Swan (Cygnus atratus) Ruffled ©WikiC

Black Swan (Cygnus atratus) Ruffled ©WikiC

Western Australia’s Black Swan (Cygnus atratus) appears on the official state flag of Western Australia (sometimes contracted as “Westralia”), which occupies the western third (i.e., almost a million square miles) of that island-continent country.  The Black Swan also presents prominently on Western Australia’s official coat-of-arms, flanked by two kangaroos.

Flag that bird - Flag of Western Australia

The Black Swan is well-named – their feathers are black (or black-grey, depending on how the sun shines on them), with a few white flight feathers.  Their bills are mostly bright scarlet, with a whitish bar near the tip.  And they are huge birds – adults can weigh between 8 to almost 20 pounds!  The wingspan breadth is between 5 to 6½ feet, like the length of a human lying down!  Their babies (called “cygnets”), however, are fuzzy white chicks, with dark bills, cute as they can be.

Black Swan (Cygnus atratus) with Cygnets ©WashPost

Black Swan (Cygnus atratus) with Cygnets ©WashPost

The first time that I ever saw Black Swans, excluding the confined context of a zoo’s aviary, was at The Broadmoor hotel complex in Colorado (located at the edge of Colorado Springs and Manitou Springs, within view of Pike’s Peak – an area perfect for viewing magpies).  But the Black Swan is not native to North America – it is an Aussie native.

Black Swan (Cygnus atratus) with Cygnets ©Broadmoor

Black Swan (Cygnus atratus) with Cygnets ©Broadmoor

Like other swans (e.g., the Trumpeter Swan, described at Trumpeting A Wildlife Conservation Comeback, its neck is S-curved and very long – in fact, the Black Swan has the longest neck of any swan.

Australian Magpie (Cracticus tibicen, a/k/a Gymnorhina tibicen).

The official state flag of South Australia features a bird called a “piping shrike”, but what bird is that?  Many have analytically identified it as the species now called the Australian Magpie, (Cracticus tibicen), perhaps more particularly the subspecies once called the “White-backed Crow Shrike”, which his now called the white-backed magpie (Cracticus tibicen telonocua, f/k/a Gymnorhina tibicen leuconota).

Flag that bird - Flag of Western Australia - Magpie

The Australian Magpie has several subspecies nowadays, nine according to some taxonomists – although ornithologists know that such lump-or-split classifications are vulnerable to slippery subjectivities.  [For an insight into the arbitrary subjectivity of “lumper”-versus-“splitter” taxonomy, see Footnote #2 within .]

Australia Magpie on Dead Branch ©WikiC

Australia Magpie on Dead Branch ©WikiC

The Australian Magpie is deemed a type of “butcherbird” as opposed to the “corvid” category that includes the “magpies” of Europe and America.  The Australian Magpie is famous for its singing, entertaining (those with ears to hear) with a complex repertoire of vocalizations.  The black-and-white opportunist has habituated to human-dominated habitats, such as the agricultural fields of farms, gardens, and even wooded parklands.

Australia Magpie ©WikiC

Australia Magpie ©WikiC

The Australian Magpie is not a picky eater – its diet includes both plants and animals.  Its preferred diet, however, is dominated by a variety of larval and adult invertebrates, such as insects (like ants, moths, beetles, bees, wasps, cockroaches) and arachnids (like spiders, scorpions), as well as earthworms, millipedes.  The Australian Magpie is also known to eat some small vertebrates, such as rodents (like mice), lizards (like skinks), and/or amphibians (like frogs and toads).

Some compare the problem-solving resourcefulness and the brash cockiness – of this bird – to the national “reputation” displayed by many Aussie ex-patriots.  (Maybe Ken Ham should set the record straight on that topic!)  The Australian Magpie is quite a clever problem-solver  — it has been observed breaking off the stingers of bees and wasps, before swallowing such otherwise-dangerous bugs!  The Australian Magpie is not timid – it will defend its territory against raptors trespassing therein, such as Brown Goshawks.

Crested Crane (Balearica regulorum gibbericeps).

The official flag of Uganda sports a stylized depiction of a Crested Crane, a/k/a “East African Crowned Crane” (Balearica regulorum gibbericeps), which is a subspecies of the Grey Crowned Crane (Balearica regulorum).  The same crane appears on the Ugandan coat-of-arms.

The Ugandan coat-of-arms provides a more realistic picture of a Crested Crane.

Ugandan coat-of-arms Crested Crane

The East African Crowned Crane (a/k/a Crested Crane) is a tall bird, standing up to 4 feet tall!  It can weigh 6 to 8 pounds, while sporting a wingspan breadth of 6½ feet.  The plumage is dominated by slate-grey feathers, with wing feathers of white and chestnut orange.  The Crested Crane’s black head is adorned by white cheeks (accented with red) and a showy 3D “fan” crest, of golden top feathers, somewhat resembling fireworks.

Grey Crowned Crane ©WikiC

Grey Crowned Crane ©WikiC

Cranes – of various species – are famous for their long necks and long thin legs. Unlike herons (which fly with their necks “pulled back”), the Crested Crane (like other cranes) flies with its neck straightened and outstretched.  Like other cranes, the Crested Crane is gregarious – their aggregate nesting territories may host a flock of up to 200 residents.  These cranes are typically monogamous and territorial.  These socially stable birds are known to live as long as 20 to even 40 years of age.

In the wild, the Created Crane eats a mix of seeds (such as grains), other plant materials, insects, and worms.  Other foods eaten include eggs and fish, and even small lizards and frogs.  This diet is similar to the diet of other cranes (e.g., Sandhill Crane, Whooping Crane, Common Crane, etc.) around the world.  Cranes routinely eat whatever is available and convenient, so cranes are classified as “opportunist” feeders – consuming small mammals (like rodents), fish, snails, amphibians (like frogs), worms, insects, seeds (like grains, nuts, acorns), berries, root vegetables, and other plant materials (such as leaves.  As a matter of biome ecology, most cranes prefer wetlands, such as mudflats and other shorelands, or in wide open fields, such as prairies.

Common Crane in Estonia ©WikiC

Common Crane in Estonia Wetland ©WikiC

The “Common Crane” (Grus grus) is a cousin the these African cranes.  The Common Crane has a summer range, typically boreal forests (called taiga in Russia) that covered most of the top half of Eurasia, with blotches of winter ranges in Europe (Spain), Asia (e.g., China), and parts of Africa.

The zoologist George Cansdale [see his ALL THE ANIMALS OF THE BIBLE LANDS, pages 158-159] – after analyzing the mix of Biblical, ornithological, and biogeographical evidence – concludes that the Hebrew noun ‘agûr (e.g., in Jeremiah 8:7 & Isaiah 38:14) refers to the noisy Common Crane (Grus grus), an identification that the learned Hebrew scholar John Joseph Owens concurs with [see his ANALYTICAL KEY TO THE OLD TESTAMENT, volume 4, pages 116 & 242].  Matching the ‘agûr of Isaiah 38:14, the Common Crane is clamorously noisy, especially when agitated.  Cranes are also phenological migrants, a trait that accords with Jeremiah 8:7.

A review of our introductory verse provides another insight, the contrast between patience and pride:

Better is the end of a thing than the beginning thereof: and the patient in spirit is better than the proud in spirit.  (Ecclesiastes 7:8)

In Ecclesiastes 7:8 the Hebrew adjective translated “patient” is ’erek – it denotes someone or something that is prolonged, drawn out, slow, longsuffering.  Accordingly, to be “patient in spirit” is to be willing to wait one’s turn, according to God’s providential line-up (and timing).  A humble person doesn’t butt in line; he or she patiently waits in the queue, for his or her turn.

In Ecclesiastes 7:8 the Hebrew adjective translated “proud” is gabah  — it denotes someone or something that is high, haughty, or high-minded, in some contexts what we sometimes call “uppity”.  Accordingly, to be “proud in spirit” is to regard one’s self as higher that one should, which is the opposite of what God (through Paul) commands us to be:

Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each [i.e., all of us] esteem others better than themselves.  Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others.  (Philippians 2:3-4)

Interestingly, humility and patience go well together, because accomplishing a long-term project often requires interacting successfully with other people, and getting other people to coöperate with you (so that your goals can be furthered) routinely requires you to serve their needs and goals.  This is called mutual symbiosis when we see it in birds; we call it “win-win” coöperation when humans do it.  In win-win situations the coöperating parties both further their respective goals, so their interactive relationship is not one-sided. (Contrast this with “parasite”-like people, who habitually take, but won’t give).

Unsurprisingly those who are haughty-minded, being selfish, are slow to appreciate this life principle, because “uppity” people cannot understand or accept the law of Acts 20:35, that “it is more blessed to give than to receive” (quoting the Lord Jesus Christ Himself).  Consequently, many who could help them, with their project checklists, may shy away  –  why host a parasite?   And so it is that many who are haughty are proud to assertively start – yet don’t finish – complex projects that require prolonged patience.   Why?  Part of the cost of succeeding was the cost of benefiting others who contribute to the project.  The end is predictable:  failure and shame.

For which of you, intending to build a tower, sitteth not down first, and counteth the cost, whether he have sufficient to finish it?  (Luke 14:28)

A sober lesson for long-term projects (including long-term relationships)!  Yet, this is a lesson much needed in America, nowadays, where impatient and high-minded “get-rich-quick” tactics all-too-often end in disappointment and discord.  (This author has seen many illustrations of this in business bankruptcy cases and in employment law contexts.)

In sum, thankfully, this “flags” the end of this mini-series on national vexillology-related birds.


“Flag That Bird!”(Part 1)(Part 2)(Part 3)(Part 4) 


James J. S. Johnson’s Articles


Old Mr. Owl Writes A Book

Great Horned Owl (Bubo virginianus) by Bob-Nan

Great Horned Owl (Bubo virginianus) by Bob-Nan


Daddys Bedtime Story Images

Old Mr. Owl Danced with the Rest

“Old Mr. Owl wanted to write a book and he asked the fairies how to set about doing it,” commenced daddy.

“‘Well,’ said the fairy queen, ‘it makes a good deal of difference, old Mr. Owl, what you want to write about.’

“‘What nonsense!’ he said. ‘It’s just that I want to know how to start off with my book. Just think what a marvelous book it will be—as for as long as folks can remember I’ve been called the Wise Bird—the bird who’s awake at night and whose eyes are so very bright!’

“‘Before I started saying what a fine book it would be, if I were you, I’d write it and give other people the chance to say so,’ said the fairy queen.

“Mr. Owl began to write with his pen, made out of one of Mr. Turkey Gobbler’s best feathers, on a large, flat stone, which he put in the hollow of his tree. Very late in the night, he awakened the fairies who had been sleeping, and told them to listen to his book. Then he called all the owls from the neighborhood with a loud hoot-hoot. But before he began to read, he said:

“‘I’ve not enough light. I will hurt my eyes—my beautiful, wise, big eyes.’

“You see he had made a special arrangement to have his own lights, and when he said that he hadn’t enough, from all over came countless little fireflies. They sparkled and gave the most beautiful light all over the woods, and Mr. Owl put his spectacles on his nose, and said:

“‘Now I see to perfection—which means quite all right.’ And Mr. Owl commenced reading his book.

“It told about the parties, balls, and picnics in fairyland, and of the wild adventures and happenings in the woods. The fairies were absolutely delighted that a book had been written with so much about them in it.

“And the fairy queen was more than happy, for the last chapter was all about her.

“‘Well,’ said Mr. Owl, ‘you made me ashamed of myself for boasting about my book before I had written it, and so the only thing I could do was to write a wise chapter all about you.’

“And the fairy queen smiled with pleasure and also with amusement—for Mr. Owl had certainly thought he could write a wise book—though the next time, perhaps, he wouldn’t say so before he had written it.

“The fireflies had been sparkling and flashing lights all this time, and finally they whispered:

“‘Have a dance, all of you; we’ll give you the light and dance too. It is not well to read books all the time—you must dance.’

“So they all ended off with a fine dance, and old Mr. Owl, with his book under his wing, danced with the rest of the owls and fairies. But before the evening was over he presented to the fairy queen a copy of his book, which said on the cover, ‘A BOOK, by Wise Mr. Owl.'”

Barred Owl by Ray

Barred Owl by Ray

Lee’s Addition:

But I say to every one of you, through the grace given to me, not to have an over-high opinion of himself, but to have wise thoughts, as God has given to every one a measure of faith. (Romans 12:3 BBE)

But he giveth more grace. Wherefore he saith, God resisteth the proud, but giveth grace unto the humble. (James 4:6 KJV)

Figured it was about time the first chapter was added to the Daddy’s Bedtime Bird Stories. We do need to be careful not to think too highly of ourselves. Let other complement what you do.


Another Bird Tale From

Daddy’s Bedtime Bird Stories – Gutenberg ebooks


Mary Graham Bonner

With four illustrations in color by
Florence Choate and Elizabeth Curtis

Daddys Bedtime Story Images

These stories first appeared in the American Press Association Service and the Western Newspaper Union.

Many of the sketches in this volume are the work of Rebecca McCann, creator of the “Cheerful Cherub,” etc.

Daddys Bedtime Story Images
Daddy’s Bedtime Bird Stories by Mary Graham Bonner – 1917



Painted Bunting (Passerina ciris) ©©Flickr

Bird Tales



Daddys Bedtime Story Images


 Daddy’s Bedtime Bird Stories



Spanish Sparrow (Passer hispaniolensis) by Nikhil Devasar


 Wordless Birds



Eastern Screech Owl (Megascops asio) baby Reinier Munguia