Our Feathered Friends - Sept. 5

My Pastor Brother Larry Meadors preached this past Sunday on teamwork, and one of the ways he came across was using a flock of Geese that would fly in a "V" formation. Of course, he pointed me out as "The Birdman" and told our Church family that anyone wanting to know more about birds should talk to me. Anyway, Canada Geese and other such birds have been doing this since the dawn of time. The first bird in the formation cuts through the air and the others follow through the slipstream created by the upwash effect from the wingtip vortices of the bird ahead. The "V" formation is also called a "skein," the same principle of aircraft flying in an echelon. This same reaction will find its way on a racetrack where it is recognized as "drafting," sometimes I will call it tailgating. Same thing, but illegal on the highways.

{phocagallery view=category|categoryid=20|imageid=560|displayname=0|float=left}To get technical, with a flock of at least 25 birds in formation, each bird can achieve a reduction of induced drag by up to 65% and as a result increase their range by 71%. The bird flying in the lead will swap places with other members of the flock to spread flight fatigue equally among the other birds in the formation. The next time you get on the interstate, pass an 18 wheeler and you will feel the difference as you move from behind the truck to go around.

Back to my Pastor's message, go to the Bible and read Mark chapter 5, verse 18 through 25. This was teamwork, for the man with palsy couldn't walk into where Jesus was at, but his four friends went up on the roof and lowered his couch down in the midst through the tiles where he was healed. Faith in God goes a long way.

Getting back to our Ruby-throated Hummingbirds, they should be here in even greater numbers all the way through the month of September. I am planning for a lot more Hummers to show up, and then the influx will wind down as the end of the month gets here. Remember the formula for "Hummer Juice" is 1 part sugar to 4 parts hot water and, of course, let it cool before placing it outside for the birds. NO FOOD COLORING! Anyone that desires a close-up experience with a Hummingbird should come over to my home and take a seat on my front porch. I just walked in the house after being swarmed with Hummers and plan to place out a couple more feeders out front. It makes me want to put on my bright red Hawaiian flowered shirt to see what will happen next.

We would love to hear from you as to whats lurking about in your neighborhood and at your feeders. You can reach Karen Franklin via e-mail at karen.feathered@gmail.com and you can write me at 606 Fairview Ave., Lebanon, TN, or e-mail me at ourfeatheredfriends@yahoo.com