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Cassie the cassowary lived a lonely life.
She would wander through the forest, eating fallen fruit, while other birds flew among the trees.
“Why can’t you fly?” they would ask.
“Your puny little wings can’t even lift you off the ground!” they would say with derision.
“You’re a disgrace to birds.” they would chirp before they flew away.
Cassie was feeling increasingly isolated and useless, so she decided to leave the forest for good.
As she walked free from the trees, she heard a deep voice from behind.
“Where are you going?” Read the rest of this entry »
The wedge-tailed eagle of Australia is a magnificent bird of prey.
One of the largest eagles in the world, they have a massive wingspan that measures over two metres across. Soaring effortless high above the ground, they are a wonderful sight and I have seen them not far from where I live.
They are equipped with huge talons and a large, sharp beak to catch and kill their prey, which can be as large as a wallaby, goat or lamb.
But there’s a problem.
Despite their fearsome hunting equipment, they most often survive on roadkill.
Hermit crabs are remarkable creatures.
Unlike true crabs, which have their own exoskeleton to protect them, they have taken to inhabiting empty shells.
When they get too big for the shell that they are living in, they find a new one and move right in.
Over the years, I’ve met too many people who were afraid to learn the lesson of the hermit crab.
They find themselves stuck in a job that doesn’t suit them anymore.
I’m constantly amazed by the engineering skills of birds.
They build these extraordinary nests out of twigs, using only their beaks, while I struggle to assemble a kit from Ikea.
One question that I’ve always had regarding nests, is where does the first twig go?
I know that the final outcome is intertwined and able to withstand the wind and rain, but that first twig could just blow away before the rest could be attached and weaved together. After all it’s just sitting in the fork of a tree with nothing else to keep it in place.
And if that first twig is dislodged, I guess the bird just methodically retrieves it from the ground and places it again.
There’s a Korean proverb that says, “A turtle only travels when it sticks its neck out.”
I love this concept.
A turtle, scared and startled is sitting there with her head inside her shell.
She’s hungry and she knows that food is just a few metres away, but she’s hesitant to move.
It’s potentially dangerous.
(Feel free to read this using your best Sir David Attenborough impersonation)
The African savanna is dotted with thorny acacia trees.
It’s a source of food for many species of herbivore and is crucial to their survival.
At the bottom of the tree, the tiny dik-dik antelope nibbles at the small leaves, nimbly avoiding the sharp thorns that protect the tree from such raiders.
Spiders are truly amazing creatures.
They labour for days to create a wonderful web that they use to catch their food, only for someone to walk through it, destroying all of their good work.
What they do next is remarkable.
They don’t sulk.
They don’t give up and stop spinning webs.
They don’t bemoan their bad luck.
The bird in the cage doesn’t sing because its situation is perfect.
It doesn’t sing because it’s necessarily happy.
It doesn’t sing to entertain others.
It doesn’t sing in memory of happier times flying free.
It sings because that’s what it was born to do.
Tom went to visit his mentor Dwyer for his weekly catch up.
It was obvious that the younger man was troubled by something, so Dwyer asked him what was wrong.
Tom explained that he had experienced a tough week. He’d had an argument with his dad, he felt hurt by something one of his friends had said and he had missed out on a promotion at work.
“So what should I do now?” he asked.
Dwyer looked at Tom and said, “Did you know that meerkats eat scorpions?”
Once upon a time, there was a shepherd who had 10 sheep.
Every night, they would happily sleep in a field together, until one night something went wrong.
When the shepherd came to gather the sheep in the morning, there was one missing.
The next night the nine remaining sheep went to sleep, but once again, when the shepherd returned in the morning one was missing.
The sheep were getting worried, so the next night, Seamus the sheep kept one eye open to see what was happening.
What Seamus saw was astonishing!