Tuesday, June 1, 2010

May Bows To June

Where did May go? It went super fast for me. Again being busy, especially in the Lord's work, time speeds up, don't you agree?

Well as the custom has been since this blog's inception, Raven's delight is to try hard to begin the first day of each month with a blog no matter how important, or trivial it may be. June will be no different.

As usual, I like to know how the different months got their name. June is an interesting one and of course it's named after a pagan goddess.

Juno was the Queen of the Gods. She gave her name to the month of June. She was the goddess of marriage, which partly explains why June weddings are so auspicious. The Greeks knew her as Hera.

The summer solstice is normally June 21st (sometimes the 20th). In the northern hemisphere this is the day with the most daylight. After this date the days begin to get shorter". Normally this day is not specifically celebrated in North America. However, other cultures do have celebrations. This is also the first day of summer.

Wouldn't it be nice, and maybe when we are in the new system of things this will be, to have the months named after the magnificent qualities of our glorious creator, Jehovah God? That would be so much more appropriate in honor of him.

We learn so much about Jehovah from the things he has created. And because of my friends at Birds of a Feather, I have developed a keener awarness of one of Jehovah's most delightful creations, Birds! After all Jesus did say "observe intently the birds of the heavens." (Matthew 6:26) And so I find myself listening, looking, and observing more closely these beautiful creatures.

Being out in the ministry is such a blessing from Jehovah. Not only do we strenghten our faith and skill in helping others and ourselves, it affords us an opportunity to drink in deeply of Jehovah's creations causing us to meditate on Him and his amazing creative abilities, and wisdom.

This past Saturday, the last Saturday of May, when out in the ministry, not only did we have some enjoyable conversations with our neighbors, but we also had the unexpected pleasure of coming across a beautiful, well designed bird's nest resting on the side of the road. It evidently had fallen out of a tree onto the ground. We anxiously looked to see if there were any eggs in the nest. Sadly, they lay crushed on the ground. The color of the eggs were a lovely deep acqua. I immediately picked up the nest, this work of art, not only to bring it to my home , but especially to share this delightful find with my birds of a feather blogging friend who I affectionately call Sparrow, but you all know her as San. She too expressed a delightful sigh of joy when she saw it.

"What kind of birds nest is it?", I asked. She said, "I'm pretty sure it's a Robins nest, you should blog about it" I said, "what a great idea." She took a picture of it to put on the blog, and sent it to me on e-mail, and it came out beautifully. I believe she is putting it on her blog site and as time permits, blog about robins nests as well. I will make an attempt to do the same. So between the both of us, you shoud be well informed.

I came across some information on how Robins build their nest. There is a ton of information on the different shapes of nests, the matereial that birds use and the places they build them. It is an engineering marvel, giving credit and glory to Jehovah who made them instinctively wise.

Focusing on robins, they can live up to 12 years. They may have built 20 or even 30 nests over their lifetimes. They don't need written instructions for building their summer homes. They follow the "nest-building blueprints" in their brains, and instinctively know how to build the perfect structure to hold the eggs they're about to lay. Have you ever noticed that robins' nests are always alike? But have you ever seen a robin teaching another how to build a nest?

Imagine you are a robin. You can make a nest yourself if you follow the insturctions below.

1. Find a suitable building site.

. The site should be protected from sun, wind and rain. It can be anywhere from ground to treetop in height; the site must be on something sturdy enough to anchor the nest securely in place.

. Your nest should also be very close to a good feeding spot so you can easily find worms while keeping an eye on it, and it shouldn't be too far from water.

. Choose a spot that is hard for predators to see. Remember, you and your eggs and babies will be sitting here for the next 5 weeks, so be careful to pick a spot that's safe, cool, and comfortable.

2. Gather materials.

. Grass fibers: Collect about 350 dead grasses and twigs that are about 6 inches long. (The pile should weigh about 135 grams.)

. Soft mud: After a soaking rain, collect mouthfuls of mud in your beak and travel back and forth to your nest site a few hundred times.

3. Build!

. Weave the grasses together, cementing them to each other and to the supporting branch or windowsill with mud.

. Next, use your tummy to shape the nest into a perfect baby cradle.

. Finally, line the inside with the softest grasses and hairs you can find so the eggs will stay warm and not get pierced by any twigs or sharp grass edges. The nest must be tight and snug enough to cradle the eggs and hold in your warmth, but large enough to hold four or even five big nestlings.

When you are finished, your nest should weigh about 205 grams when dry. This is a heavy nest. But four nestlings together can weigh as much as 280 grams before they leave, so your nest must be very strong!

IMPORTANT NOTICE! You've done a lot of work to make this wonderful nest. But after the babies leave, you often have to move out! Even the cleanest robin family can't keep out mites, lice and flies. Once these critters get a head start, they can really multiply fast, making an old nest unsafe for a new batch of babies. You might raise later broods in the same remodeled nest, or you (the female) may build a second nearby nest in 2 or 3 days.

The Awake magazine dated 7/22/71 pp.14-15, also mentioned the robin assembles his nest in a variety of places. He uses branches or crotches in trees; bushes, porch vines, rose arches, fence posts, stone walls, nooks on buildings, bridges, boats and wagons as well as nesting shelves set up by some kind human. The height of these locations has been observed to vary from a few feet to seventy feet from the ground.....the robins use natural mud as a cement for their nests. If none is available they have been known to make it by filling their bills with dust and then dipping them into a birdbath. Or they may wet their feathers and shake off the drops in a dusty place.

Also there was this interesting detail in the 12/8/99 Awake under "Whistling While They Work", it said," Do you enjoy working to music? Well, apparently, many birds do too. The book "The Private Life of Birds", by Michael Bright, notes that birdsongs have a stimulating physical effect on listeners, saying that after exposure to birdsongs, "the heart rates of both males and females went up." Furthermore, some female birds "built their nests faster" and "also tended to lay more eggs" when they listened to male birdsongs."

So as you can see these beautiful creatures work hard. By being alert to note how and where the birds themseves make nests, one may be move to praise and thank the loving Creator, Jehovah God, for these winged gifts to mankind. Psalms 104:1, 16, 17.

There is more I wanted to add, but because of a lack of time I must stop. Until next time.

This is Raven-as the crow flies!


  1. Loved this info on the nest building. (Haven't gotten to read the June info yet) I watched a Robin fly into my Dogwood today. I started snooping around and low and belhold, a nest. I think he is still building it, so this article really took on meaning for me. Thank you so much for doing the research. I will try to take time to observe every day.

  2. Wow Sparrow, wouldn't it be nice to have time lapse photography? You will have to keep us up to date on the Robin's bird nest.

    Glad you liked the blog. There is so much more to tell.

    Hope to make the bird feeder party, even if it is for a short time.

    See you soon.

  3. This was great info. I don't remember if I told you we have a robins nest in ivy next to my patio. If we walked by, the bird flew out and surprised us. Much to our surprise the nest is being used again. Another 4 eggs. Bev