Sunday Inspiration – Cardinalidae Family of Cardinals Plus

Northern Cardinal M-F ©BackyardBirdLover

Northern Cardinal M-F ©BackyardBirdLover

Wherefore art thou red in thine apparel, and thy garments like him that treadeth in the winefat? (Isaiah 63:2 KJV)

Today, you are being introduced to the Cardinalidae Family, which is the last family, in taxonomy order, of the Passeriformes Order. Since February 1, 2016, we began the journey with the first four families in More Amazing Birds. Now we have arrived at the last of the 131 families of this order. I trust you have enjoyed the journey through these many Sundays. Hopefully you have been blessed by the great variety of Avian Wonders from our Lord, their Creator. The Passeriformes Order contains well over half of all the birds in the world; around 6,000 plus of the 10,659 species on the latest update. (6.3)

The Cardinalidae – Cardinals, Grosbeaks and allies has 69 species in the family. Because of that number, this family will be presented in two segments. Growing up in Indiana, the Northern Cardinal was a favorite of most of us. It is the “State Bird” of Indiana along with six other states. [Illinois, Kentucky, North Carolina, Ohio, Virginia, West Virginia] The family members are found in North and South America. The South America Cardinals of the genus Paroaria are placed in another family, the Thraupidae (previously placed in Emberizidae). Even though the family name is Cardinalidae, there are only two “cardinals” among the members.

Lazuli Bunting (Passerina amoena) ©WikiC

Lazuli Bunting (Passerina amoena) ©WikiC

Also known as cardinal-grosbeaks and cardinal-buntings, this family’s members “are robust, seed-eating birds with strong bills. The family ranges in size from the 12-cm (4.7-in), 11.5-g (0.40-oz) and up orange-breasted bunting to the 25-cm (9.8-in), 85-g (2.99-oz) black-headed saltator. They are typically associated with open woodland. The sexes usually have distinctive appearances. The northern cardinal type species was named by colonists for the male’s red crest, reminiscent of a Catholic cardinal’s biretta.

The ‘North American buntings’ are known as such to distinguish them from buntings. The name ‘cardinal-grosbeak’ can also apply to this family as a whole.”(Wikipedia)

Scarlet Tanager (Piranga olivacea) by Kent Nickell

Scarlet Tanager (Piranga olivacea) by Kent Nickell

The family starts off with 11 Tanagers in the Piranga genus, which used to be in with the tanagers, but were relocated here recently. “They are essentially red, orange or yellow all over, except the tail and wings and in some species also the back. Such extensive lipochrome coloration (except on the belly) is very rare in true tanagers, but is widespread among the Cardinalidae in the Piranga genus.

These songbirds are found high in tree canopies, and are not very gregarious in their breeding areas. Piranga species pick insects from leaves, or sometimes in flight. They will also take some fruit. Several species are migratory, breeding in North America and wintering in the tropics.”

Red-throated Ant Tanager (Habia fuscicauda) by Michael Woodruff

Red-throated Ant Tanager (Habia fuscicauda) by Michael Woodruff

Next are the Ant Tanagers in the Habia genus. “These are long-tailed and strong billed birds. The males have a red crest and plumage containing red, brown or sooty hues. Females may resemble the males or be largely yellowish or brown in colour.” Following these are four more tanagers in the Chlorothraupis genus. These are the last of the tanagers that were moved to this family.

Rose-breasted Grosbeak (Pheucticus ludovicianus) by Rob Fry

Rose-breasted Grosbeak (Pheucticus ludovicianus) by Rob Fry

The next genus, Pheucitcus has six Grosbeaks.  Typical of the genus, they lay two to five pale bluish to greenish eggs with heavy brown and gray speckling. The cup nest is built at medium height in a bush or small tree.” (Wikipedia)

Red-breasted Chat (Granatellus venustus) ©WikiC

There are three Chats in the Granatellus genus; Red-breasted Chat, Grey-throated Chat, and the Rose-breasted Chat. They range from North America through Central America into northern South America. Their natural habitat is subtropical or tropical dry forests.

Pyrrhuloxia (Cardinalis sinuatus) ©Flickr Don Faulkner

Pyrrhuloxia (Cardinalis sinuatus) ©Flickr Don Faulkner

We will finish this first half of the family with three of my favorites, the Cardinalis genus. Our Northern and Vermilion Cardinals and the Pyrrholixia (which I saw for the first time last year) are hard to miss with their bright set of feathers the Lord provided for them. These range across North America and into northern South America.

“He answered and said unto them, When it is evening, ye say, It will be fair weather: for the sky is red.” (Matthew 16:2 KJV)

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“Come now, and let us reason together, saith the LORD: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.” (Isaiah 1:18 KJV)

“Written in Red” – Faith Baptist Choir and Orchestra

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 3:16-19 KJV)

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More Sunday Inspirations

Sunday Inspiration – More Amazing Birds

PASSERIFORMES – Passerines

Cardinalidae – Cardinals, Grosbeaks and allies

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Sunday Inspiration – Thraupidae – Tanagers and Allies IV

Paradise Tanager (Tangara_chilensis) -DenverZoo-WikiC

Paradise Tanager (Tangara_chilensis) -DenverZoo-WikiC

And Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee, To day shalt thou be with me in paradise. (Luke 23:43 KJV)

This week, you are only going to meet those Tanagers that belong to one Genus. Why? Because there are around 50 of them and they are beautiful. The Lord created these beauties, and through their breeding, many varieties are available for us to enjoy. The genus featured today are those with Tangara as the first part of their scientific name. One of my favorites is the one above (actually all of them are). You might think an artist worked on these birds. Well, actually, He Did! “I know all the fowls of the mountains: and the wild beasts of the field are mine.” (Psalms 50:11 KJV)

Well, let’s get started looking at and learning about these lovely avian wonders.

Golden-eared Tanager (Tangara chrysotis) ©WikiC

Golden-eared Tanager (Tangara chrysotis) ©WikiC

Tangara is a large genus of birds of the tanager family. It includes about 50 species, but as currently defined the genus is polyphyletic. All are from the Neotropics, and while most are fairly widespread, some have small distributions and are threatened. They are fairly small, ranging in size from 11.5–15 centimetres (4.5–5.9 in). This genus includes some of the most spectacularly colored birds of the world.

Flame-faced Tanager (Tangara parzudakii) ©WikiC

Flame-faced Tanager (Tangara parzudakii) ©WikiC

These tanagers are mainly found high in forest canopies, but some occupy more open habitat. They are found at all elevations below tree line but are most diverse in the Andean subtropical and foothill forests of Colombia, Ecuador and Peru.

The female builds a usually well concealed cup nest and lays two brown- or lilac-speckled white eggs. These hatch in 13–14 days and the chicks fledge in a further 15–16 days. The male and female feed the nestlings on insects and fruit, and may be assisted by helpers.

Tangara tanagers pick insects from leaves, or sometimes in flight, but fruit is a major dietary item, accounting for 53-86% of food items in those species which have been studied. (Information from Wikipedia Tangara)

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And they sing the song of Moses the servant of God, and the song of the Lamb, saying, Great and marvellous are thy works, Lord God Almighty; just and true are thy ways, thou King of saints. (Revelation 15:3 KJV)

“El Shaddai” ~ by Nell Reese

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More Sunday Inspirations

Sunday Inspiration – Thraupidae – Tanagers and Allies I

Sunday Inspiration – Thraupidae – Tanagers and Allies II

Sunday Inspiration – Thraupidae – Tanagers and Allies III

Traupidae Family – Tanagers and Allies

Sharing The Gospel

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Sunday Inspiration – Thraupidae – Tanagers and Allies II

Vermilion Tanager (Calochaetes coccineus) ©Nick Athanas

Vermilion Tanager (Calochaetes coccineus) ©Nick Athanas

Come now, and let us reason together, saith the LORD: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool. (Isaiah 1:18 KJV)

Last week’s Sunday Inspiration of Tanagers and Allies started us off on this huge family. We will continue, starting with the five Lanio genus of Shrike-Tanagers.

Brazilian Tanager (Ramphocelus bresilius) by Dario Sanches

Brazilian Tanager (Ramphocelus bresilius) by Dario Sanches

The words of the LORD are pure words: as silver tried in a furnace of earth, purified seven times. (Psalms 12:6 KJV)

Wait until you see the second very colorful genus, the Ramphocelus. These are Neotropical birds that have enlarged shiny whitish or bluish-grey lower mandibles, which are pointed upwards in display. However, this is greatly reduced in the females of most species. Males are black and red, orange or yellow, while females resemble a duller version of the males, or are brownish or greyish combined with dull red, orange or yellowish.

Cherrie's Tanager (Ramphocelus costaricensis) Female by Raymond Barlow

Cherrie’s Tanager (Ramphocelus costaricensis) Female by Raymond Barlow

Ramphocelus tanagers are found in semi-open areas. The nest is a cup built by the female of plant materials such as moss, rootlets, and strips of large leaves like banana or Heliconia, and is often in a fairly open site in a tree. The female usually lays pale blue eggs, with grey, brown or lavender spots, and the young stay in the nest for only about 12 days. The songs of this genus are repetitions of rich one- or two-syllable whistles. Most of these are of a crimson or reddish hue.

Sayaca Tanager (Thraupis sayaca) ©WikiC

Sayaca Tanager (Thraupis sayaca) ©WikiC

The Thraupis Tanagers are another beautiful genera of the Lord’s Creation. This time, blue will is the dominate color. “These tanagers are mainly found in semi-open habitats including plantations and open woodland, but some will venture into towns. They feed from medium to high levels in trees, taking mainly fruit, with some nectar, and insects which may be taken in flight.” (Wikipedia)

Blue-backed Tanager (Cyanicterus cyanicterus) ©Francesco_Veronesi

This week will end with two genus that have only one species each, the Vermilion Tanager (Calochaetes coccineus) and the Blue-backed Tanager (Cyanicterus cyanicterus). All the birds this week live from Mexico down through South America.

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I know all the birds of the mountains, And the wild beasts of the field are Mine. (Psalms 50:11 NKJV)

“My Faith Still Holds” ~ Faith Baptist Orchestra

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More Sunday Inspirations

Sunday Inspiration – Thraupidae – Tanagers and Allies I

Traupidae Family – Tanagers and Allies

Hope for Hard Times

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Trinidad Tanagers Contradict Competition “Law” Proposed by Darwinists

Speckled Tanager (Tangara mexicana) ©WikiC

Speckled Tanager (Tangara mexicana) ©WikiC

Trinidad Tanagers Contradict Cutthroat Competition “Law” Proposed by Darwinists

CAN TWO WALK TOGETHER, EXCEPT THEY BE AGREED?  (AMOS 3:3)

“Survival of the fittest” has been a dominating tenet of Darwinian evolution for more than 150 years now. But a trio of colorful birds, living on islands off Venezuela’s coast, provides debunking evidence that, as Dr. Steve Austin would say, Darwin was wrong, when he alleged that do-or-die competition was the fundamental force that shapes nature. So how do these birds dispute Darwin? By eating!

PAS-Thra Bay-headed Tanager (Tangara gyrola) by Michael Woodruff 2

Bay-headed Tanager (Tangara gyrola) by Michael Woodruff

Three varieties of Trinidad tanagers share bugs on the same trees as they silently undermine the “natural selection” myth’s survivalism principle. Without wasteful confrontations over limited food resources, found on the same trees that each of these birds forage upon: (1) speckled tanagers pick off bugs from tree leaves, (2) bay-headed tanagers prefer to eat bugs from under large branches, and (3) turquoise tanagers snap up bugs from twigs.1

Admitting that adversarial competition was lacking, these evolutionist scientists reported the following:  “In the 1960s, two ecologists made careful [empirical] studies on the island of Trinidad of the niches of eight coexisting species of tanager–brightly colored songbirds of the New World tropics. Of the eight species, three, the speckled (Tangara guttata), the bay-headed (T. gyrola), and the turquoise tanager (T. mexicana), were extremely closely related.  They all belonged to the same genus, lived in the same trees and bushes, and fed on insects and fruit. This suggests little in the way of division of resources, for all three species seemed to be using the same ones.  More detailed field observations, though, showed up the niche differences, as is clearly demonstrated by considering one aspect of the pattern of resource division.  In hunting for small insect prey in vegetation, the speckled tanager almost exclusively searches the leaves themselves.  It clings to them upside down, picking off insects, or it walks along small twigs, picking off insects from the leaves above it.  The other two species only rarely feed like this.  Instead, both obtain most of their insect prey form the undersides of branches.  The bay-headed species does this mainly on quite substantial branches, hopping along and leaning over each side alternately to reach under it for insects.  The turquoise tanager, in contrast, almost always takes insects from fine twigs, usually those less than half an inch in diameter.  It also has a predilection for the insects found on dead twigs, which are usually untouched by the other two species.  These detailed observations show that insect food resources and specific feeding areas on the island of Trinidad are neatly split even between very closely related birds.” [Quoting from Whitfield, Moore, & Cox, THE ATLAS OF THE LIVING WORLD  — see endnote #1 below.]

In other words, illustrating what ecologists call noncompetitive niche positioning, this tanager trio avoids antagonistic competition.1 To appreciate how this peaceful prey sharing upsets the presumptions of Charles Darwin, Thomas Huxley, and their modern ilk, it’s helpful to review why Darwin’s ideas were welcomed so fervently by academics who scoffed at Genesis.

Turquoise Tanager (Tangara mexicana) ©WikiC

Turquoise Tanager (Tangara mexicana) ©WikiC

Generations before Darwin’s “natural selection” theory first became popular, deists (people who essentially believed in a God yet rejected the Bible) like Charles Lyell and James Hutton, effectively laid the groundwork for the acceptance of evolution’s survivalism themes.  (Neither deists nor Darwinists anchor their research on Scripture, yet they also oppose each other.)

Both deists and Darwinists have misreported living conditions on Earth, yet they do so in opposite ways. Deists err on the “see no evil” extreme, underestimating the terrible fallenness of creation.2 Darwinists, however, overemphasize “conquer or be conquered” survivalism—even nominating death as nature’s hero and means of “progress”, instead of recognizing death as the terrible “last enemy” to be destroyed.3 Both extremes misrepresent nature as they actively oppose and/or passively ignore the facts of Scripture.   Unsurprisingly, the true portrayal of nature’s condition is found in holy Scripture, starting in Genesis, a Mosaic book that Christ Himself endorsed as authoritative (John 5:44-47).

The deists’ approach produces worthwhile observations of natural beauty, orderliness, and efficiency but then fails to account for how Earth “groans” after Eden.2  What about birds that peck other birds to death, while fighting over food and territory?  That’s not beautiful!  In the first half of the 1800s, deism failed to explain such ugly forms of competition, so many academics sought a humanistic theory that explained Earth’s uglier features—disease, deprivation, dying—without resorting to God’s revealed answers in Genesis.

Enter Charles Darwin’s magic mechanism of “natural selection”!—an animistic theory invented to substitute for God role as Creator.  This now-popular form of quasi-polytheistic animism often uses the alias “survival of the fittest.”

Darwin and his followers imagined the global ecosystem as a closed “fight-to-the-death” arena, swarming with vicious creatures scrapping for limited resources.  In a one-sum game (“red in tooth and claw,”4 adopting a phrase from Tennyson to fit Darwin’s theory), gain by one competitor meant loss to another.  This selfish competition was quickly heralded as “nature’s law”, so explaining wildlife interactions soon required interpretations based on that brutal assumption.2

But real-world data routinely refuse to fit the evolutionary paradigm. Yet like today, the  embarrassing and uncooperative facts were routinely dismissed and ignored during the 1800s and 1900s.5

Embarrassing Darwin’s theory, even moreso than a lack of wasteful competition, is the prevalent reality of mutual aid, also called mutualistic symbiosis, where different life forms help each other, such as algae and fungus coexisting as lichen or bees pollinating the flowers from which they harvest nectar. Like noncompetitive eco-niche positioning,1 mutual aid doesn’t harmonize with Darwin’s antagonistic competition “song,” so mutual reciprocity (and self-sacrificing altruism) displays are also censured from or marginalized by academics who are gatekeepers of science education curricula.6

Consequently, field studies are often skewed by researchers who quickly jump to conclusions that endorse antagonistic survivalism—as if “natural law” always requires adversarial competition.

Even today, modern Darwinians (both atheistic and theistic), lauding mystical “natural selection”, trumpet creation’s fallenness as Earth’s foremost feature — all the while discarding or disparaging or detouring the historical documentation that God has provided in Genesis regarding what triggered Earth’s undeniable fallenness.

Meanwhile, creatures like tree-snacking Trinidad tanagers make a mockery of Darwinian dogma, as they peaceably share food.

References

  1. Philip Whitfield, Peter D. Moore, & Barry Cox, The Atlas of the Living World (Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1989), pages 100-101 (quotation taken from page 100; picture portraying non-competitive eco-niche positioning on page 101).
  2. Deists believe in an intelligent Creator God, so they expect Him to make a “perfect” creation. However, because they dismiss the Bible, they imaginatively philosophize about what they think a perfect God would do with His creation—as they self-confidently assume that they know how a perfect God would think and act. Accordingly, deists are quick to recognize God’s caring handiwork in nature; they see orderliness, logic, beauty, and many good things — but they totally miss God’s wisdom as it is displayed in allowing Adam’s choice to trigger the earth’s present “groaning”, which is a temporary condition that (due to redemption in Christ) will be succeeded by a better-than-the-originally-perfect situation (that then needed no redemptive restoration by Christ). See James J. S. Johnson, Misreading Earth’s Groanings: Why Evolutionists and Intelligent Design Proponents Fail Ecology 101. Acts & Facts. 39 (8): 8-9 (August 2010).
  3. 1 Corinthians 15:26.
  4. Darwinists hijacked this phrase from Lord Alfred Tennyson, In Memoriam A. H. H., Canto 56 (1849).
  5. James J. S. Johnson, Jeff Tomkins, & Brian Thomas. 2009. Dinosaur DNA Research: Is the Tale Wagging the Evidence? Acts & Facts, 38 (10): 4-6 (October 2009); James J. S. Johnson, Cherry Picking the Data Is the Pits, Acts & Facts, 44 (7): 19 (July 2015).
  6. Gary Parker, 1978. Nature’s Challenge to Evolutionary Theory, Acts & Facts, 7 (10), July 1978; James J. S. Johnson, “Providential Planting: The Pinyon Jay”, Creation Ex Nihilo. 19 (3): 24-25 (1997); Steve Austin, Grand Canyon: Monument to Catastrophe. Santee, CA: Institute for Creation Research, 1994), pages 156-159.

Dr. James J. S. Johnson formerly taught ornithology/ avian conservation, as well as courses in  ecology, limnology, and bioscience, for Dallas Christian College, and continues to be a “serious birder”.  A condensed version of this creation science article appears as James J. S. Johnson, Tree-Snacking Tanagers Undermine Darwin, Acts & Facts, 45 (6):21 (June 2016).

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Sunday Inspiration – Thraupidae – Tanagers and Allies I

Chestnut-headed Tanager (Pyrrhocoma ruficeps) ©WikiC

Chestnut-headed Tanager (Pyrrhocoma ruficeps) ©WikiC

“For ye shall go out with joy, and be led forth with peace: the mountains and the hills shall break forth before you into singing, and all the trees of the field shall clap their hands.” (Isaiah 55:12 KJV)

Our journey through the Song Bird Order, known as the Passeriformes Order, has been ongoing for many Sundays. There are 131 Families within this Order, and we are now down to three families to go. The Traupidae Family which we are starting today, has 375 species. Guess what? We will not be covering them all today. The last four Sundays was used to show you the Emberizidae family of 181 species. I trust you enjoyed having that family split up into “bite-size” articles. The same will be true with this family of beautiful Tanagers and allies created by their Creator.

If you are fairly new to seeing these Sunday Inspirations, the slide shows have the birds arranged in taxonomy order. So, there really is a reason for the way they are presented in the slides.

White-lined Tanager (Tachyphonus rufus) Female ©WikiC

White-lined Tanager (Tachyphonus rufus) Female ©WikiC

“The family has an American distribution. The Thraupidae are the second-largest family of birds and represent about 4% of all avian species and 12% of the Neotropical birds. Traditionally, about 240 species of tanagers were described, but the taxonomic treatment of this family’s members is currently in a state of flux.” (Wikipedia)

Red-crested Cardinal (Paroaria coronata) ©WikiC

Red-crested Cardinal (Paroaria coronata) ©WikiC

“Tanagers are small to medium-sized birds. The shortest-bodied species, the white-eared conebill, is 9 cm (3.5 in) long and weighs 7 grams, barely smaller than the short-billed honeycreeper. The longest, the magpie tanager is 28 cm (11 in) and weighs 76 grams (0.168 pounds). The heaviest is the white-capped tanager which weighs 114 grams (0.251 pounds) and measures about 24 cm (9.4 in). Both sexes are usually the same size and weight. Tanagers are often brightly colored, but some species are black and white. Birds in their first year are often duller or a different color altogether. Males are typically more brightly colored than females. Most tanagers have short, rounded wings. The shape of the bill seems to be linked to the species’ foraging habits.”(Wikipedia)

Black-faced Tanager (Schistochlamys melanopis) at National Aviary by Dan

Black-faced Tanager (Schistochlamys melanopis) at National Aviary by Dan

The Brown Tanager (Orchesticus abeillei) starts us off, followed by six Cardinals in the Paroaria genus. Various Tanagers from Schistochlamys, Cissopis, Conothraupis, Lamprospiza, Compsothraupis, Sericossypha, Nemosia, Creurgops, Mitrospingus and Orthogonys. (22 birds)

Black-headed Hemispingus (Hemispingus verticalis) ©WikiC

Black-headed Hemispingus (Hemispingus verticalis) ©WikiC

Next will be 15 Hemispingus, all in the Hemispingus genus. Hemispingus is a genus of warbler-like tanagers. They are found in highland forest in South America, especially in the Andes.

Fulvous-headed Tanager (Thlypopsis fulviceps) ©WikiC

Fulvous-headed Tanager (Thlypopsis fulviceps) ©WikiC

We will conclude with 20 or so more Tanagers from eight various genera. As you watch the slide show, you will see how the Lord enjoyed giving a great variety of color and patterns for these avian singers.

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

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Deck thyself now with majesty and excellency; and array thyself with glory and beauty. (Job 40:10 KJV)

“My Jesus I Love Thee” ~ Faith Baptist Orchestra

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Sunday Inspirations

Traupidae Family – Tanagers and Allies

Family: Building a Home God’s Way

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Lee’s Two Word Tuesday – 4/19/16

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Green-headed Tanager (Tangara seledon) ©Flickr Meghan Hess

 GOOD FRUITS

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“But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, and easy to be entreated, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality, and without hypocrisy. (James 3:17)

Green-headed Tanager (Tangara seledon) ©Flickr Meghan Hess

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More Daily Devotionals

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Sunday Inspiration – Tanagers

Golden-hooded Tanager (Tangara larvata centralis) ©BirdPhotos.com

Golden-hooded Tanager (Tangara larvata centralis) ©BirdPhotos.com

 

(26) Look at the birds of the air; they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father keeps feeding them. Are you not worth much more than they?
(27) And who of you by worrying and being anxious can add one unit of measure (cubit) to his stature or to the span of his life?
(28) And why should you be anxious about clothes? Consider the lilies of the field and learn thoroughly how they grow; they neither toil nor spin.
(29) Yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his magnificence (excellence, dignity, and grace) was not arrayed like one of these.
(30) But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is alive and green and tomorrow is tossed into the furnace, will He not much more surely clothe you, O you of little faith?
(31) Therefore do not worry and be anxious, saying, What are we going to have to eat? or, What are we going to have to drink? or, What are we going to have to wear?
(32) For the Gentiles (heathen) wish for and crave and diligently seek all these things, and your heavenly Father knows well that you need them all.
(33) But seek (aim at and strive after) first of all His kingdom and His righteousness (His way of doing and being right), and then all these things taken together will be given you besides.
(34) So do not worry or be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will have worries and anxieties of its own. Sufficient for each day is its own trouble.  (Matthew 6:26-34 AMP)

 

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“Your Grace is Sufficient” by Courtney Love

Tanagers are found in three different families:

More Sunday Inspiration

Changed From the Inside Out

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Birds Vol 1 #1 – The Red-Rumped Tanager (Scarlet-Rumped or ?)

Red-Rumped Tanager

Red-Rumped Tanager

Birds Illustrated by Color Photography – Revisited

Vol 1. January, 1897 No. 1

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THE RED-RUMPED TANAGER.

(RELOCATED – CLICK HERE)

 

Working Behind the Scene – Tanagers

Grass-green Tanager (Chlorornis riefferii) by Michael Woodruff

Grass-green Tanager (Chlorornis riefferii) by Michael Woodruff

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)

I have been busy trying to find photos for the Thraupidae – Tanagers and Allies Family page. The Tanagers are one of Passeriformes (Song Bird) Order. Working on this page and an upcoming series has kept me from writing as many articles.

But, Wow! Tanagers are some very neat birds that are found throughout the Americas; North, Central, and South (60% of them). Some are plain, but many are very colorful. At the present time with the IOC’s Version 2.10 of the Birds of the World list, there are 388 species in the Traupidae family. Needless to say, that is taking me some time to find the photos and then to load them to the site or provide links for the ones that I do not have permission for. I have gotten down to the Diglossa genus of Flowerpiercers. (which is a little past half way)  I am trying to find as many of the supspecies also and that is where a lot of time is getting spent.

Brazilian Tanager (Ramphocelus bresilius) by Dario Sanches

Brazilian Tanager (Ramphocelus bresilius) by Dario Sanches

The Internet Bird Collection has one of the best collections that list the supspecies. It is a tremendous site that I use quite frequently. As of today, 12/6/2011, they have 56,387 videos, 51,697 photos and 6859 sounds of birds. That represents about 88.67% of all species. When I have problems finding a photo, this place will have it most likely.

Blue-and-yellow Tanager (Thraupis bonariensis bonariensis) ©BirdPhotos.com

Blue-and-yellow Tanager (Thraupis bonariensis bonariensis) ©BirdPhotos.com

Known to God from eternity are all His works. (Acts 15:18 NKJV)

Back to the tanagers. The family is in flux and some members have been moved to other families, but most are still in the Thraupidae family which has not only Tanagers, but also Hemispingus, Shrike-Tanagers, Mountain Tanagers, Dacnis, Honeycreepers, Conebills, Flowerpiercers, Bush Tanagers, Finches, Reed Finch, Island Finch, Diuca Finch, Inca Finch, Warbling Finch, Grassquit and Orangequits, Seedeaters, Seed Finch, Bullfinch, Ground Finch, Ant Tanagers, Chat-Tanagers, Spindalis and a Plushcap.

Blue-grey Tanager (Thraupis episcopus) by Ian

Blue-grey Tanager (Thraupis episcopus) by Ian

Tanagers are small to medium-sized birds. The shortest-bodied species, the White-eared Conebill, is 9 cm (3.8 in) long and weighs 7 grams, barely smaller than the Short-billed Honeycreeper. The longest, the Magpie Tanager is 28 cm (11 in) and weighs 76 grams (2.7 oz). The heaviest is the White-capped Tanager which weighs 114 grams (4 oz) and measures about 24 cm (9.5 in). Both sexes are usually the same size and weight. Tanagers are often brightly colored, but some species are black and white. Birds in their first year are often duller or a different color altogether. Males are typically more brightly coloured than females.

Most tanagers have short, rounded wings. The shape of the bill seems to be linked to the species’ foraging habits, which shows forethought and design by their Creator.

Golden-hooded Tanager (Tangara larvata centralis) ©BirdPhotos.com

Golden-hooded Tanager (Tangara larvata centralis) ©BirdPhotos.com

Most tanagers live in pairs or in small groups of 3-5 individuals. These groups may consist simply of parents and their offspring. Birds may also be seen in single species or mixed flocks. Many tanagers are thought to have dull songs, though some are elaborate.

Tanagers are omnivorous, and their diet varies from genus to genus. They have been seen eating fruits, seeds, nectar, flower parts and insects. Many pick insects off branches. Other species look for insects on the underside of leaves. Yet others wait on branches until they see a flying insect and catch it in the air. Many of these particular species inhabit the same areas, but these specializations alleviate competition.

Western Tanager (Piranga ludoviciana) by Kent Nickell

Western Tanager (Piranga ludoviciana) by Kent Nickell

The breeding season begin in March through until June in temperate areas and in September through October in South America. Some species are territorial while others build their nests closer together. There is little information on tanager breeding behavior or whether they are monogamous or polygamous. Males show off their brightest feathers to potential mates and rival males. Some species’ courtship rituals involve bowing and tail lifting.

Most tanagers build cup nests on branches in trees. Some nests are almost globular. Entrances are usually built on the side of the nest. The nests can be shallow or deep. The species of the tree they choose to build their nest in and the nest’s position varies among genera. Most species nest in an area hidden by very dense vegetation. There is still no information on the nests of some species.

Scarlet Tanager (Piranga olivacea) by Kent Nickell

Scarlet Tanager (Piranga olivacea) by Kent Nickell

The clutch size is 3–5 eggs. The female incubates the eggs and builds the nest, but the male may feed the female while she incubates. Both sexes feed the young. Five species have helpers assist in feeding the young. These helpers are thought to be the previous year’s nestlings.

The Genus I am working on right now is the Diglossa. The Flowerpiercers, The common name refers to their habit of piercing the base of flowers to access nectar that otherwise would be out of reach. This is done with their highly designed bills, although this is greatly reduced in the Bluish Flowerpiercer, which has an almost “normal” bill. Most flowerpiercers are restricted to highlands, especially the Andes, in South America, but two species occur in Central America. See the article – Formed By Him – “Sword and Piercer” Birds

O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! how unsearchable are his judgments, and his ways past finding out! (Romans 11:33 KJV)

Well, guess I better get back to work behind the scenes again. Keep checking the page as I work to the bottom. Not sure how many more beautiful birds I’ll find, but it is fun to birdwatch through the cameras of others who go places I’ll never get to. I stay amazed at the paint brush and designs from our Creator.

The Gospel Message

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(Above mostly from Wikipedia)

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