Hope you had a wonderful spring weekend…The Editor was reminiscing about her college days at a West Palm Beach Baptist college. She and some friends would go sit on a bench overlooking a little lake surrounded by condos. There was a beautiful swan in the lake that they loved to watch. One of the ladies in the condos told them the Swan’s name was Narcissus because it just seemed to know how beautiful it was and acted accordingly.
I took a trip with a good friend to the Jacksonville zoo to see our local Wood Stork rookery. If you take a look at this huge long-legged wading fowl one thing is evident. It is not considered beautiful like its Swan friend on the lake. Some people would call it down right ugly in fact. The adult’s head is bald and wrinkled from the bacteria that migrate up the long pointy beak and attack the head feathers while it feeds in the low muddy riverbeds and streams. But even these gawky looking birds have the urge to procreate when spring is in the air. We saw several dozen mating pairs. A few had recently hatched chicks while some were just arriving and starting to built nests. Some were waiting for that magic moment to emerge and bring forth a new generation. The hungry chicks were cute and covered with white down. Maybe they won’t grow up and be considered beauties like the elegant Swan but you should see them fly!
We watched the clear blue sky in awe as these huge Storks with broad black tipped wings brought branches and twigs from nearby trees and patiently built their simple stick nests on a tree in the zoo. They glide thru the air as graceful as any Swan can do. When they come in to land, the feet hang down like landing gear on a plane. I was amazed at how delicately this large bird could glide up to the nest, slow its descent, fold its wings and touch down on the nest without disturbing a twig or making the branches sway. The Jacksonville zoo should be proud of its efforts to keep this remarkable bird breeding for future generations to see.
We have all seen them, the beautiful people of the world. You know, the Hollywood starlets, actors, sports figures, and such. Like the swan, they seem to get all the attention. Some people hang on their every word. Not me though. I’ll put the elegance and wonder of my plain ole Wood Stork’s flying against those Hollywood looks any day. Beauty is only feather deep you know. Be blessed. Harry