Emma Foster’s – Denny and Charles’s Museum

G. Blue Heron on Gator’s back at Gatorland, by Lee

Denny and Charles’s Museum

Emma Foster

Denny the blue heron was the smallest out of all the blue herons that lived in the Florida reserve, but no one ever made fun of him for it because his best friend was the largest alligator in the reserve, Charles. Denny and Charles spent most of their time crossing the various swamps, with Charles slinking through the mud and weeds and Denny sitting on his back.

Usually, whenever Denny and Charles set out together, they would follow the trails marked in the reserve, so that they were always near the banks. The people who visited the reserve enjoyed seeing them wander down the swamp trails, especially since Denny sat on Charles’s back while Charles swam through the weeds.

One day, while Denny and Charles were traveling through the water, Denny spotted something unusual in the water. It was bright red, and it shone brightly when the sun reflected on it. Denny stuck his beak inside it to pick it up. He lifted the can and placed it onto Charles’s back. Denny wasn’t quite sure what it was, and Charles couldn’t see it because it was on his back. Denny decided to keep it.

Great Blue Heron (Ardea herodias) by Raymond Barlow

Farther along down the reserve trail, Denny spotted another interesting object. He wasn’t sure what this was either, but it was bright yellow and small. Denny added it to his growing collection.

Eventually, Denny had several small objects piled on Charles’s back. He placed everything he had found on the bank so Charles could have a look at it. They both thought about what to do with what Denny found. After thinking for a long time, Denny proposed an idea. He thought it would be a great idea to set all of the objects they found in an area where all the other animals in the swamp could see them.

Denny promptly flew off to find a large open area for them to place their things. Charles slowly nudged the objects into his mouth and followed Denny to where he was calling. Charles dumped the objects onto the grass, glad to be of help.

Every day, Denny and Charles added more to their collection. They found two old water bottles, a small pipe, and several pieces of different materials that were several different colors like pink, red, blue, and yellow. Denny kept the can placed in a special spot for everyone to see, since he had found it first.

The birds, insects, and other animals enjoyed seeing all the things Denny and Charles had put out. Some of them thought it was odd that they collected that stuff, since it seemed to serve no purpose.

Gator and Litter @indiatvnews

As summer drew near, it began raining more and more. Most of the animals had a comfortable place to spend every night. Charles was happy to sit in the swamp in the rain, and Denny sat in the trees, keeping a close eye on his collection. However, as he was watching it one evening he saw a little gray mouse pass him nearby. It was so small it could dodge the raindrops, but it still looked very wet and cold. It hid under the leaves in the bushes, but it couldn’t seem to find a warm, dry place for the night. Denny suddenly thought of the things he had found, but he couldn’t think of anything that would make a good house. Then he thought of the can.

Denny called Charles over. He told him about giving the can to the mouse, though he was reluctant to give it away. Charles thought it was a great idea, and he immediately crashed through the bushes to put the can in his mouth. Denny flew after the mouse, told her his name, and explained what they wanted to give her. At that moment, Charles waddled through the bushes and dropped the can beside the mouse. The mouse, Charlotte, was very grateful for what they had done. She rolled the can under the leaves, turned it to the side, and carefully squeezed through the opening to sit down inside.

Mouse in Can (BBC)

Denny and Charles continued growing their collection. The other animals in the reserve enjoyed seeing what they added to the museum, and they sometimes even brought some of their own things that they had found. Charlotte the mouse stayed in her little can house, beside Denny and Charles’s museum, and told them every day how happy she was in her new home.


“A man that hath friends must shew himself friendly: and there is a friend that sticketh closer than a brother.” (Proverbs 18:24 KJV)

Lee’s Addition:

What an interesting story. Birds riding on gator’s backs isn’t as far-fetched as it might seem.

Thanks, Emma, for another delightful adventure. You continue to find heart-felt stories for us to enjoy. We will be looking forward your next one.

“Nevertheless, you have done well to share with me in my affliction.” (Philippians 4:14 NASB)

See more of Emma’s Stories

Great Blue Heron at Gatorland

Emma’s Stories – The Spring Party of Reginald’s Turkeys

Turkey by the River ©(Photo Kelly Preheim) FWS-GOV

Turkey by the River ©(Photo Kelly Preheim) FWS-GOV

Reginald the Turkey Commander: The Spring Party

by Emma Foster

   It was nearly springtime, and the turkeys were able to leave their fortresses in the woods to search for food without worrying about hunters or too much snow. There hadn’t been a lot of snow that year, which meant that the closest river to the turkeys wasn’t usually covered in ice.

One day, when it was almost March and the air was cool, the turkeys decided that it would be a good idea to head to the closest lake to celebrate another winter soon over. Reginald, the leader of the turkeys, decided that it would be best to build boats out of the bark of the wood from the trees in order to float down the river to the nearest lake.

The turkeys set to work, finding different trees around the forest where they could easily peel off the bark or branches to make boats and rafts for the river. Oliver followed Reginald around as Reginald looked for something he could use. Reginald found some trees where the bark had been torn off from a storm. He gave several pieces to Oliver to take back to the camp, though Oliver had a difficult time carrying all of them at once. He started kicking a few pieces ahead until Reginald picked up the last pieces and helped him back to the camp.

Some of the smaller turkeys floated on the large pieces of bark they had found, while Reginald and a few others tied the thinner pieces together with moss. When all the boats were finished, Reginald and the turkeys cast off down the river. Reginald knew where the closest lake was, and he knew that the river would split off in two different directions at one point. He knew that the turkeys needed to head east.

Wild Turkey (Meleagris gallopavo) by Ian

Reginald, Oliver, and the other turkeys started floating down the lake, steering and rowing with branches. The sun was shining through the trees, and the water was cool and shallow. Reginald made sure that Oliver didn’t float to far away or that he was steering too far ahead.

But when they came to the place where the river went in two different directions, Oliver got caught up in the rapids and drifted the other way, toward the west. Reginald changed course and followed, letting the other turkeys go ahead to the lake.

The water seemed rougher on the side Oliver and Reginald were on. Oliver looked behind him as Reginald tried to catch up and flapped his wings violently. Because he wasn’t paying attention, his boat hit a rock and started to break apart. When Reginald got close enough, Oliver panicked and jumped onto Reginald’s boat. Reginald did his best to keep Oliver from sinking his boat by paddling to the side of the river. He pulled Oliver out of the boat and made his way back to the other river so they could follow it down to the lake.

After walking for what felt like hours, Reginald figured that they were lost and started following the direction of the sun because he knew that the lake had to be north. Oliver trailed after him the entire time, completely forgetting where they were even going. Reginald just shook his head and kept walking.

Turkeys ©Pixabay

Reginald eventually realized that they had been going around in circles. He decided to go straight ahead, and eventually he and Oliver came through the bushes and found the other half of the river. They followed it down stream for a long time before they came to a tree trunk that had fallen across the river. The turkeys had left the boats there because it was too low for them to row under it. Reginald guessed they had walked the rest of the way, which shouldn’t be that far.

Oliver immediately hopped onto the tree, took a few steps to cross the river, and fell in, flapping his wings in terror. Reginald ran after him, urging Oliver to keep his head above water. Suddenly, Oliver disappeared. Reginald reached the edge and realized Oliver had fallen down a small waterfall and had landed in the lake all the other turkeys had reached. Many of the turkeys sat by the side of the lake, enjoying the sun, and they were not surprised to see Oliver flailing about in the water. Reginald finally decided to just jump in after Oliver, leaving his army helmet by the shore. The rest of the day, Reginald, Oliver and the other turkeys sat by the lake in the sun, happy that winter was slowly fading and that they had another year to spend where it was warm before they needed to go back to the fortresses.


Lee’s Addition:

They are abundantly satisfied with the fullness of Your house, And You give them drink from the river of Your pleasures.” (Psalms 36:8 NKJV)

I will seek what was lost and bring back what was driven away, bind up the broken and strengthen what was sick; but I will destroy the fat and the strong, and feed them in judgment.” (Ezekiel 34:16 NKJV)
“that the saying might be fulfilled which He spoke, “Of those whom You gave Me I have lost none.” (John 18:9 NKJV)

These verses seem to me to sort of apply. Jesus applies these to us, but the turkey definitely enjoyed the time at the river. Our hero, Reginald, made sure all the turkeys arrived safely. Our Lord wants to make sure that we all arrive safely in Heaven with Him.

Another great story, Emma. Thanks for keeping us up to date on the latest adventures of Reginald and this flock.

See More of Emma’s Tales of Reginald and others at:

Emma’s Stories

Twelve Years of Blogging

Hooded Merganser Diving Duck, Georgia, by William Wise

Here we go again with another anniversary of the blog. Around February 13th or so, was the 12 anniversary of Lee’s Birdwatching Adventures Plus. During this year, we hit the two million visitor mark. Wow!

The Birds of the Bible For Kids blog has been an important part of the main blog. We have tried to simplify many of the same articles from there so that the younger readers might understand also. We want all to enjoy the Lord’s Created Avian Wonders.

Eastern Phoebe on Beautyberry

Eastern Phoebe on Beautyberry 12-19-19

Looking at all the articles written about the 11th anniversary, I’ll let this one be simple. I just reread all the comments and encouragement that you sent last year. Those were and are again so appreciated. Now, the blog has slowed down some, but we are still blogging. Because of health and our new house, most of my birding adventures seem to be out my back door. I love the avian visitors!

This year, William Wise has joined us with some very interesting articles and photos. Welcome Aboard, William!! Dr. Jim has continued to contribute articles, which are always enjoyable. Ian Montgomery is still sending posts, and Emma Forster continues to enlighten us with her stories. Me, I’ve written less, but we are still at it.

Raven in Pumpkin by Linda Marcille

The Lord is always faithful and keeps us interested in His Creation.

Stay tuned to see what this new year of blogging will discover about our Avian Wonders from the Lord.

(9)  For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though He was rich, yet for your sakes He became poor, that you through His poverty might become rich.
(10)  And in this I give advice: It is to your advantage not only to be doing what you began and were desiring to do a year ago;
(11)  but now you also must complete the doing of it; that as there was a readiness to desire it, so there also may be a completion out of what you have.
(12)  For if there is first a willing mind, it is accepted according to what one has, and not according to what he does not have. (2 Corinthians 8:9-12 NKJV)

Wordless Birds

Emma’s Stories – Ted and Red

House Finch male ©Glenn Bartley-Wichita StateU

Ted and Red

by Emma Foster

Once there were two finches named Ted and Red who were brothers. They lived in two trees that had been planted next to each other. Their trees were in a courtyard by a museum, which provided them with plenty of shade because Florida was almost always hot. Both birds had many friends in the courtyard.

The birds spent most of their time flying around the beaches and hectic streets searching for food or just having fun watching the different tourists around the coast. Many times, people on the dock would feed them breadcrumbs.

Sandhill Cranes

Sandhill Cranes

But as summer came, the days grew hotter and longer, and there were many rainy days. Ted and Red stayed in their nests most of the time under the protection of their large shady trees. Their friends stayed in their little homes too: the fish remained comfortable in their pond, the two cranes who lived nearby nestled in their nests in the bushes, and the black snake stayed in his small hole in the grass.

House Finch Resting

One day when there wasn’t much rain, Red went out to search for some food. While he was gone, the clouds grew black, and Red knew he needed to hurry home. However, when he reached the courtyard, the rain poured down harder, and Red couldn’t see very well. He flew toward a light that he saw up ahead and accidentally flew into the museum, sliding across the slippery floor. Red knocked against a small object, sending it crashing to the ground. An alarm went off somewhere, and Red quickly flew back outside and into his nest, where he told Ted what had happened. The rain slowly lessened, and the alarm stopped. Several museum employees had to clean up the mess. Red felt terrible for breaking the vase, but Ted and their friends told him it was an accident and it wasn’t his fault.

House Finch (Carpodacus mexicanus) by Raymond Barlow

Just then, another alarm went off, and someone ran out of one of the entrances, holding a large vase. Ted, Red, and their friends thought fast. The fish quickly pointed to the machine that visitors inserted quarters into to obtain fish food to throw to the fish. Ted and Red flew against it and beat on it with their feet as hard as they could, while the two cranes beat their wings against it. The black snake followed behind the man in case he turned around, hoping that the man would be too scared to step over him. The fish food spilled across the walkway, and the man stealing the vase fell over, while the security guards ran after him and caught him. The security guards were afraid to step over the black snake too. Ted and Red flew back into their nests. Red felt much better afterwards, knowing that he made up for his earlier mistake.

House Finch (Haemorhous mexicanus) by Ian

House Finch (Haemorhous mexicanus) by Ian

Ted and Red spent the rest of their summer with their friends in the courtyard. From then on, whenever it rained Ted and Red were careful to stay in their comfortable nests. To their friends, they were now considered honorary security guards.


What an interesting story, Emma. I trust our readers enjoy it as much as I do. The teamwork of this mixture of critters reminds us of how, as Christians, we work together, even though we have different gifts. The seems to blend us together to accomplish His Will.

“Now there are varieties of gifts, but the same Spirit; and there are varieties of service, but the same Lord; and there are varieties of activities, but it is the same God who empowers them all in everyone. To each is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good.” (1 Corinthians 12:4-7 ESV)

See More of Emma’s Stories

Emma’s Stories Retold – Lizzy and the Penguin Catapult

Emperor Penguin (Aptenodytes forsteri) ©WikiC

Emperor Penguin (Aptenodytes forsteri) ©WikiC

Emma’s Stories Retold – Lizzy and the Penguin Catapult

~ by Emma Foster

Once there was a penguin named Lizzy who lived with many other penguins in cold Antarctica.

As the penguins traveled through the winter, Lizzy watched with great interest all the eggs that lay on the penguin dad’s feet. Lizzy was too young to go fishing with all the mother penguins that year, so she was traveling with the father penguins to someplace slightly warmer.

Emperor with egg on feet ©WikiC

Emperor with egg on feet ©WikiC

Eventually all of the penguins came to an enormous, icy lake that was too large to go around. The penguin parents huddled together and decided to build a catapult out of some wood they brought with them to build their homes. The catapult would shoot penguins one at a time over the lake. The penguins decided this because the dad penguins could not cross the lake with eggs; and, if they all traveled across it at once, the ice might break. The penguins decided the eggs would be safe because there was a lot of snow on the other side of the lake which would cushion their landing.

Gentoo Penguin - Paradise Bay

Gentoo Penguin – Paradise Bay

Lizzy helped build the catapult and it wasn’t long before it was finally completed.

The first penguin had to be launched by the catapult, but no penguin was willing to do it. Lizzy was a brave penguin and decided to go first.

The catapult was launched, and Lizzy flew through the air. She was actually flying!

Adelie Penguin (Pygoscelis adeliae) by Bob-Nan

Adelie Penguin (Pygoscelis adeliae) by Bob-Nan

Lizzy landed softly and safely in the snow on the other side of the lake and waved to the other penguins. One by one, the rest of the penguins catapulted over the lake with the eggs. When they were all safely on the other side, they traveled to their new home.

The End


Lee’s Addition:

“Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; (Philippians 4:6 NKJV)

Thanks, Emma, for another delightful story. Lizzy is one brave little Penguin and also willing to help out.

I am sure the penguins, even though not humans, were thankful to their Creator for taking care of them.

“But now ask the beasts, and they will teach you; And the birds of the air, and they will tell you; Or speak to the earth, and it will teach you; And the fish of the sea will explain to you. Who among all these does not know That the hand of the LORD has done this, In whose hand is the life of every living thing, And the breath of all mankind? (Job 12:7-10 NKJV)

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See more of Emma’s Bird Tales

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ABC’s of the Gospel

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Emma’s Tales Retold – Norman Joins The Baseball Team

Wood Stork up close by Lee at Lake Morton

Wood Stork up close by Lee at Lake Morton

Norman Joins The Baseball Team

by Emma Foster

There once was a stork named Norman. Every morning from a high spot in a tree he would watch the children from a nearby neighborhood walk down the street to the bus stop. The bus stop was right next to the zoo, which was where Norman lived.

His favorite part of the day, though, was when some of the kids came to the baseball field to practice. The field was right next to the zoo, and Norman enjoyed the game of baseball so much he decided to join the team.

The coaches were a little shocked at first to see that a stork was trying out for the team, but they decided to give Norman a chance. Norman was given his very own baseball bat, and he stepped up to the plate.

The first time Norman swung at the ball he missed, and a fifth grade boy yelled, “Strike one!” Norman hit the ball the second time, and flew to first base. It was then that Norman learned that you weren’t supposed to fly in baseball, and you had to make sure your baseball bat didn’t go flying as well.

Norman didn’t make it to first base anyway. One of the boys grabbed the ball off the ground and threw it to another boy at first base. The coach said that Norman was out, but Norman was still welcome on the team.

The first game was that Saturday. It was the last inning and Norman was up to bat. The bases were loaded.

The other team’s pitcher threw the ball, Norman swung the bat, and the ball sailed up into the sky. It was a home run! Norman and his team won the game, and Norman was allowed to stay on the baseball team.

The End


Woodstork & Lee by Dan at Lake Morton

Woodstork & Lee by Dan at Lake Morton

Lee’s Addition:

Where the birds make their nests; The stork has her home in the fir trees. (Psalms 104:17 NKJV)

Thanks, Emma, for another delightful story, this time about Norman.

Emma is a teenager now, and I suggested she write us another story. This was her latest then. See her other ones in the Bird Tales section.

Norman might be that friendly Stork that hangs out at Lake Morton I encountered recently. Didn’t see a baseball cap though.

Emma Foster’s Previous Stories:

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ABC's of the Gospel

  

  ABC’s of the Gospel

 

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Emma’s Tales Retold – Mrs. Patterson’s Parrot

 

Emma’s Tales Retold – Mrs. Patterson’s Parrot

 

Parrot Had A Little Trouble Getting Into The House by Emma Foster

Parrot Had A Little Trouble Getting Into The House by Emma Foster

[Patterson’s Parrot, originally posted in 2012 as Mrs. Patterson’s Parrot]

One day an old lady named Mrs. Patterson decided that she should have more company around. She traveled down to her local pet store and parked her car. Mrs. Patterson was guided by one of the workers through the store. When they came to the section where the birds were, Mrs. Patterson stopped at an enormous parrot. The parrot had red wings, green all over his body, a blue ring around his neck and a yellow spot on his tail. Mrs. Patterson wanted him for her bird.

It took awhile before the parrot could fit through the door! The parrot was so big that he had to wear a leash that Mrs. Patterson held through the window of her car and soar above it. The parrot had a little trouble getting in the house! When he got into the house, Mrs. Patterson named him Bob.

But one day a visitor came to the door and addressed himself as Mr. Field. He explained that Bob was his parrot that he had lost long ago. After saying goodbye, Bob left with Mr. Field, wearing a leash, and flew away above Mr. Field’s truck.

The next day Mr. Field came back with Bob! Mr. Field said that he worked at a circus with Bob, but Bob could not remember any of his tricks so he had to bring him back. Mrs. Patterson thanked him and sat down in a chair with Bob. She knew he would always be her parrot.

The End

(I did no editing of the article. Click the photo to enlarge it.)


Lee’s Addition:

Emma was 12 years old and Home Schooled when this was first posted. She attends our church and likes to draw and write. I told her that if she wrote about a bird, I would publish it here on the blog. Above is her story and drawing of Bob the enormous Parrot. I trust you enjoy it as well as I did. She was in the 7th Grade at the time. [She is now in college] If you enjoy it, please click the Like button as that will be an encouragement to her.

Train up a child in the way he should go; even when he is old he will not depart from it. (Proverbs 22:6 ESV)

P.S. Emma is the Granddaughter of another of our Guest Writers, Dot Malcolm. She has written three articles for us.

The Joy of Awareness

When the Robins Came

Return of the Robins

plus more

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*** As I am bringing back the Kids articles, thought you might enjoy re-reading these tales.

If you would like to send in a Bird Tale that you have written, send it to Lee@Leesbird.com to be considered. It can be written by a younger writer or written with the young readers in mind. ***

Shelly and the Sand Castle

Common Gull (Larus canus) by Robert Scanlon

Common Gull (Larus canus) by Robert Scanlon

Shelly and the Sand Castle by Emma Foster

One day a seagull named Shelly decided that she should fly to the beach to lay her very first egg. Shelly had previously been living near a seaside port beside a large white beach, but she felt it was not the proper place to lay an egg, especially when it was going to be her very first one. Leaving the nest that she had built on top of a pole, Shelly flew across the beach onto a giant rock.

After resting on top of the rock, Shelly surveyed the beach, searching for sticks and dirt with which to build her nest. Looking around, however, Shelly noticed that there were several children building houses out of sand. Thinking that it was a wonderful idea, Shelly promptly decided to build her first nest out of sand.

Children Building Sandcastle -©Pixabay

Flying near the waves, Shelly scooped up some wet sand with her beak until she made a small pile. She spent a few minutes trying to figure out how to get all of the sand on top of the rock. Fortunately, after glancing around, Shelly found a small plastic shovel that no one was currently using. She had seen a few children use a shovel to help them scoop up sand, so Shelly knew how to use it.

Kids Building Sand Castle ©Pinterest

“But everyone who hears these sayings of Mine, and does not do them, will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand:” (Matthew 7:26 NKJV)

After shovelling enough sand onto the rock, Shelly dropped the shovel and began meshing the sand together in a big pile, finally sitting on it so when she hatched her egg it wouldn’t fall out.

Shelly’s egg hatched a few days later. She was so excited she quickly found some food to celebrate then came back to her egg. While she was on the hunt for some food, storm clouds gathered and rain began to sprinkle. Quickly flying back to her nest, Shelly was horrified to find that her nest had dissolved and her egg was gone.

Shelly frantically began her search in the sand, but the rain began beating down so hard that Shelly was forced to stop her search and find shelter. When the rain subsided, Shelly tried to search some more, but was so anxious that she completely forgot which rock she had nested on.

Shelly searched the beach until it was too dark to see anything. Finally she had to rest in some shrubbery until morning, though she barely slept because she was so worried.

Mew Gull (Larus canus) by Daves BirdingPix

Mew Gull (Larus canus) by Daves BirdingPix

The next day was bright and sunny, and at once Shelly began her search. She noticed that there were many more people at the beach than yesterday, which made her even more worried. Shelly flew around in circles, trying to spot her egg and hoping that it hadn’t washed away into the sea.

As Shelly flew closer to the ground, she noticed a group of children building a sand castle. One of the children scooped a huge pile of sand, and Shelly could see a huge lump in the sand. When the child put the clump of sand onto the sand castle, the egg rolled down.

Seagull carrying egg to safety

Shelly swooped down and snatched her egg out of the sand with her mouth. She flew away happily, even though she could hear the children screaming and laughing behind her. Thankful that her egg was safe, Shelly immediately decided to build a nest made out of twigs and branches like the other birds. From then on, whenever Shelly hatched an egg, she made sure that her egg was hatched in a proper nest instead of in the sand.

“Therefore whoever hears these sayings of Mine, and does them, I will liken him to a wise man who built his house on the rock: and the rain descended, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house; and it did not fall, for it was founded on the rock. “But everyone who hears these sayings of Mine, and does not do them, will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand: and the rain descended, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house; and it fell. And great was its fall.”  (Matthew 7:24-27 NKJV)


Another great story by Emma. Thank you again for reminding us to heed wise instructions.

Emma Stories