|Baltimore Oriole, Adult Male|
Only in the past few years have we been blessed with these beautiful birds. The Baltimore Oriole has since been a yearly occupant. We're getting better opportunities to capture them with our cameras each year. The picture above was taken near the beginning of this spring when we noticed their recently built nest. Unfortunately, the Lumix camera I use was unable to zoom any closer.
While sitting in the living room this morning reading, I heard a raucous outside and turned to see two male Orioles fighting right by the window. They took off and we exclaimed over the wonderful chance to see these beauties up close. I went back to reading but was interrupted once again by clear Oriole chirping. Mum turned around and said excitedly for me to look. I jumped up and was thrilled to see this.
Male Orioles, like many of God's creatures, are noticeably more brilliant in color than females. The Baltimore Oriole male has a black head, neck, tale feathers, and wings, with white bands on the wings. Their main body is normally a yellow-orange, being redder at the neck and more yellow down the tail.
The female oriole is quite different. Her main body is a warm gray while her chest down to her tale feathers are a brighter yellow. She also has white bands on her wings.
Juveniles share the females coloring only in more muted tones until they reach maturity.
An Orioles beak is unique in that it enables them to feed on nectar like a hummingbird. That is why you might find them at your hummingbird feeder and you can buy Oriole feeders specifically made for the bigger birds.
The chick sat on a twig in the fence for quite a while, at first waiting patiently for the return of its father and then not so patiently. We had our cameras at the ready prepared for some amazing pictures of both adult and baby. But we noticed in the chicks impatience and agitation it was trying to fly. And we soon realized why the parent hadn't returned.
After some time the chick flapped its wings, flailed about wildly and managed to work itself onto the top of the fence where it perched for a few minutes before getting up enough courage to fly off into the trees.
The wise parents knew exactly what the chick wanted and exactly what the chick needed. In not coming to their child's cries they showed it its strength and stretched its confidence.
This is a wonderful example of life and the way God treats us. And consequently, the way we learn. We might whine and fuss that this isn't easy, but our Heavenly Father knows what we can handle and quietly waits for us to "try our wings". When we do, we learn what He was trying to teach us and that we can handle more than we would have thought.
What if God gave in to our whining and crying? He wouldn't be much of an all-wise Father then, would He?
We never know just how much we can do until we trust God and try.