Friday, February 27, 2015

Lizzy's Mason Jar Raspberry Cheesecake

Welcome back everyone! I don't have much news to share today, but I do have a great recipe from my friend Joy Hammond and Lizzy the Lizard...and Lizzy's sister, Lily. Let's get started!

Days till:
It is: 18 days till St. Patrick's Day
It is: 33 days till April Fool's Day
It is: 52 days till Patriot's Day

In the Spotlight:
Several new images from Jurassic World were released in the latest issue of Entertainment Magazine. Also in this issue are exciting set visitations they conducted last year when they were at the set of Jurassic World. The Control Room was one of the sets they visited. Based on the description, it was much like the one of the original Jurassic Park film, but much more high-tech.

A screenshot from the film featuring Owen Grady in the Control Room.
Entertainment Magazine features director Colin Trevorrow's description of the room:
"It's the most absolute high-tech room we could possibly imagine," says Trevorrow, casting a proud eye over the spared-no-expense, not-yet-filmed-on set. He waves us over to a fully functioning console, encouraging us to paw at it: "Do you want to see what it's like to control Jurassic World? Have a go." Then he spots some cookie crumbs scattered across the workstation, presumably left by one of the set builders. And proving beyond any doubt his Jurassic Park fanboy credentials, he immediately narrows his eyes and exclaims, "Nedry!"
It's nice to see Masrani Global Corporation really spared no expense in the Control Room. Colin Trevorrow was able to give another quote that really sums up the movie well:
"The movie is romantic and funny and scary and suspenseful, most of the time you only have to be one of those things, but we have to be eight things, because Jurassic Park doesn't have a genre. I guess you could say it's a sci-fi terror adventure."
Colin Trevorrow (right) coaching Owen Grady (Chris Pratt, on left) about the scene they're about to shoot.
A behind-the-scenes look at a helicopter...spared no expense!

Topic of the Week by Lizzy the Lizard from Smiley's News, as told to Joy Hammond

One of the many ways one can make a raspberry cheesecake!
“Hey guys, Lizzy here, and I've got a dessert dish for you guys to try!” Lizzy exclaims.
“'re forgetting someone,” Lily complains. “I'm Lizzy's sister, Lily and I'm the one who's baking the dish.”
“We'll be making Mason Jar Raspberry Cheesecake,” Lizzy continues, “so you'll need:
  1. 1 12-ounce package frozen raspberries
  2. 3/4 cup sugar
  3. Divided 1/2 cup and 1/4 cup
  4. 1/3 cup water
  5. 10 Oreo cookies, without the filling, or 20 chocolate wafer cookies
  6. 2 Tbsp melted butter
  7. 8 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
  8. A pinch salt
  9. 1 egg
  10. 1/3 cup sour cream
  11. Whipped cream for topping
  12. Fresh raspberries for garnish
  13. And 4 Wide-mouthed 8-ounce mason jars.”

Lily and Lizzy gather up the ingredients and put them on the counter.
“I can't wait to get started,” Lizzy say hungrily.
“Whoa! Hold on Lizzy, this isn't to be eaten just yet,” Lily adds, “it's for the party at the office in Animal Adventures Inc.
“Oh,” Lizzy mumbles disappointed.
“Okay first step: leave ½ cup of frozen raspberries aside and dump the rest into medium saucepan,” Lily reads from the recipe book.
“Which measuring cup do I use?” Lizzy asks.
Lily looks at her sister in disbelief.
“It's the one that has the ½ sign on the handle.”
“Found it!” Lizzy yells.
After the Raspberries were put into the sauce pan and Lily turns the stove on.
“It needs to be heated to maintain a simmer.”
“Simmer? What's that?” Lizzy asks.
“'Simmer' is when you keep the food that's being cooked in liquid form and not to a boil,” Lily tries to explain.
“Oh...still don't exactly get it but all right,” Lizzy states. “Okay next thing, gently cook the raspberries and whisk them frequently until they are broken down. Then it's optional to put the sauce in a strainer to take out the seeds. Then we need to return it to the pan and let it simmer again until it gets a syrupy texture and then we let it cool.”
Lily takes out the whisk and starts to gently stir the raspberries. After about ten minutes, the raspberries were all soupy.
“Now we set that aside and move onto the something else,” Lily confirms, bringing out the chocolate wafers. “Now we need to crush these until smooth. We could use a food processor, a rolling pin, or the 'beat-it-to-death-with-a spoon-while-in-a-bag' method. What do you think, Lizzy?”
“Hm...I like the 'beat-it-to-death-with-a spoon-while-in-a-bag' method!” Lizzy smiles.
“Okay, food processor it is,” Lily states.
Lily uses the processor to crumble up the wafers into it was finally ground.
“Next we put the wafers in a medium bowl and mix the butter with it,” Lily declares next. “Now we pack the mixture onto the bottom of mason jars evenly, about ¼ to 1/3 inches thick.”
Lizzy set about packing in the mixture when she accidentally breaks one of the jars.
“Geez, Lizzy!” Lily shouts. “You didn't need to be so hard on the jar.”
“Sorry,” Lizzy replies sheepishly.
“Next put the jars in the oven at 350 degrees for about ten minutes so the mixture can harden a little as crust.” Lily nods. “While that's going, let's work on the cheesecake part. Beat the cream cheese with a mixer on medium for about four minutes until it's smooth. Then add the ¼ cup of sugar in and beat another four minutes. Then add a pinch of salt and the egg into the mixture and beat once again.”
“The jars are done!” Lizzy yells, running to get the oven mitts.
“I know, I heard it!” Lily answers. “Just take them up and be careful not to drop one.”
“Haha like I'd...Ooh!” Lizzy exclaims, as one jar just barely met it's demise until it was caught. “Yeah all right.”
Lily shakes her head in disbelief.
“Okay next, add the sour cream into the batch and beat again. Then add the ¼ the cooled Raspberry sauce we made a a few minutes ago. Beat it up until it's all smooth.”
“Boy there's a lot of steps for this dessert, it better be worth it,” Lizzy remarks.
“Oh it will be. Trust me,” Lily smiles. “Now we place the the reserved raspberries on top of the crust (the chocolate wafer crumbs) that are in the mason jar, just a small layer. Then we pour the raspberry cheesecake filling into the jar next.”
Lily starts to pour the cheesecake filling in, being careful to distribute it evenly. Then she gets out a roasting pan.
“What are we doing now?” Lizzy asks.
“We put the jars on the pan and add a one inch layer of water into the pan, not in the jars. This helps the cheesecake bake evenly.” Lily explains. “Then we bake this for about 40 minutes at 325 degrees in the oven. After the time is up, we turn off the heat but we leave the pan in there for another 30 minutes to keep it cooking sort of.”
“That's a long time to wait,” Lizzy complains. “I think I'll go dive into some interesting stories to write about.”

*About an hour and ten minutes later *

Lizzy returns back to the kitchen as Lily takes out the pan.
“Yay, let's eat!” Lizzy yells, grabbing a fork.
“Whoa! Hold on a sec!” Lily exclaims, “We've got to let the cheesecake cool for another half an hour or so until it's room temperature.”
“Aw man...”

*About a half an hour later *

“ the top of the cheesecake supposed to be cracked on the top like that?” Lizzy asks, curiously.
“It's alright if it does for the toppings,” Lily grins, bringing out fresh raspberries, whipped cream, and some left over raspberry sauce.
Lizzy watched, mouth watering, as Lily puts the topping on two of the cheesecakes then gets out the spoons. She gives one two Lizzy.
“Bon appetite!” she announces.
Lizzy dives her spoon into the jar and takes out a large spoonful of cheesecake. Taking a huge bite, she smiles and then continues.
“This amazing!” She yells to no one in particular. “This is Lizzy...”
“...And Lily!”
“Signing off!”

DisclaimerMany (or in some cases all) of the photographs and images above are not mine. If you own one or more of them and would like them to be removed, politely let me know via one or both of the email addresses above.

Friday, February 20, 2015

Extreme Monotremes - pt. 1: The Echidna

Valentine's Day is over and (can you believe it?) springtime is almost here! I can't believe it myself. Anyway, I thought I'd do an animal article today because...well, I love animals...which you probably are already pretty aware of if you've been reading my blog for a while. Also, I am not sure if I've reported this already or not, but my family and I are doing another theatrical drama for Easter! It's called Victory at the Cross and unlike the other Easter drama, The King on a Cross, it goes beyond the epic account of Christ's crucifixion. This drama also takes place in the 21st century and the audience will be introduced to three people who's lives were changed upon accepting Jesus Christ. These three testimonies were not invented by the writer of this drama (who is yours truly, by the way), but are actual things that happened to three people we know from our church. Pretty cool, huh? But wait, it gets better! The crucifixion scenes will be filmed on location in the Arizona desert and shown upon a big screen in the theater we're using for the drama! That's awesome!

Days till:
It is: 25 days till St. Patrick's Day
It is: 40 days till April Fool's Day
It is: 59 days till Patriots Day

In the Spotlight:
Another great thing about the upcoming Jurassic World finally due for release is that in addition to a great video game to accompany it, it will also be accompanied by several brands of toys, some of which I've already shown on this blog. Here are some of Hasbro's toys from the JW line.

The dreaded Indominus rex!

Rexy, everyone's favorite Tyrannosaurus rex!


I can almost hear the Jurassic Park theme music with this Hasbro set!

This might be an Allosaurus, or a Metriacanthosaurus. We are unsure as of yet.

Will Ceratosaurus appear in Jurassic World?

Rumor has it that Dilophosaurus will be seen in Jurassic World.

Mosasaurus, the awesome giant marine lizard, will be a star attraction in Jurassic World.
Pachycephalosaurus, which we haven't seen since The Lost World: Jurassic Park, will make a reappearance into the franchise in Jurassic World.

Among these awesome Hasbro dinosaurs are some stunning releases of Jurassic World Lego sets! How exciting! These sets are said to be based on key scenes from the movie, so they might hint at what we can expect to see when the movie is released (however, I doubt they reveal any major plot spoilers). Here are the Lego sets below:
Dilophosaurus Ambush

Could this set reveal Dilophosaurus has a major scene in the film?
Pteranodon Capture

It looks like Simon Masrani has a big action scene coming up featuring a Pteranodon!
Raptor Rampage

The raptors in this set are two of Owen's raptor squad: Blue and Delta. Are they attacking the vehicle Claire is driving or are these clever girls up to something else?
T. rex Tracker

When the T. rex escapes, someone has to track her down and put her back where she belongs!
Indominus Rex Breakout

"So you just went and made a new dinosaur? Probably not a good idea." - Owen Grady

In additional news, via the movie's Instagram, the full names of two characters have been revealed: Owen Grady and Claire Dearing.

Topic of the Week by Christian Ryan

Monotremes, such as the echidna, are some of the weirdest mammals on the planet!
Mammals have a certain set of features that we use to tell them apart from other animals. Mammals:

  • Give birth to live young
  • Nurse their babies with their mother's milk
  • Have hair
  • Are endothermic (warm-blooded)

This is typically how mammals are defined. But several animals break these rules – either a mammal will have features that are not known to most other mammals, or other animals that are not mammals have one or more features usually attributed to mammals (e.g. pigeons produce a milk-like liquid to feed their young). This is definitely the case with two of God's most peculiar creations: monotremes! Monotremes are mammals with very un-mammal-like features that, today, only exist in Australia in the wild. While several species used to exist on the planet, the only two living types today are the echidna and the platypus. Perhaps the strangest difference between monotremes and other mammals is that instead of giving birth to live young, they lay eggs! This first part of my series will be all about the echidna.

The echidna is one of only two living mammals that lay eggs.
Despite often being referred to as the “spiny anteater”, echidnas are not related to anteaters. They're rather small, stretching 14-30 inches long (that's about a 1-2 ½ feet long) and weighs 5.5-22 pounds. Upon looking at the echidna, the first thing you're likely to see are the prickly spines covering its body; at first glance, you might mistake it for a hedgehog or a porcupine, but the echidna is unrelated to them as well. Echidnas also have a long, slender snout and sharp claws on their feet for digging. As a land-dwelling creature, we know that God created this “extreme monotreme” on the 6th day of the Creation week, about 6,000 years ago as recorded in the first chapter of the Bible's book Genesis. Echidnas get their name from “Echidna”, the Mother of Monsters straight from Greek mythology. In Greek mythology, “Echidna” is half-woman, half-snake, sort of like how the echidna has features of other animals, despite being a mammal.

There are two types of echidna throughout the continent of Australia and on the islands of Tasmania and New Guinea alive today: the long-beaked echidna and the short-beaked echidna. The difference between the two is rather distinct and not hard to figure out:

The long-beaked echidna

The short-beaked echidna, which will be the echidna species we will mainly focus on.
The echidna is not very picky about where it lives and is often found in deserts, forests, highland areas and woodlands. However, they don't like harsh weather; when unfavorable weather conditions do occur, echidnas hide in caves or rock crevasses to use as shelter. They also use the burrows of other animals, such as wombats or rabbits. Technically, these mammals are solitary, only living with other echidnas when raising young (though they do come together for mating, obviously), they aren't anti-social and have overlapping territorial ranges. Here's another interesting fact about echidnas: they're not warm-blooded! At least, they're not warm-blooded in the sense of most mammals. But they're not cold-blooded either. In fact, they're classified as mesotherms. Mesothermic animals are rather rare today, but, by a more layman definition, are animals rather in between warm and cold-blooded. Great white sharks, leatherback sea turtles and quite possibly dinosaurs are mesotherms. Unlike warm-blooded animals, their body temperature doesn't stay generally the same (it tends to fluctuate), but they also have some control over how much energy they use to create heat for their bodies.

The short-beaked echidna lives throughout Australia, New Zealand and Tasmania.
As their nickname, “spiny anteater” might suggest, echidnas are insectivores. Like so many animals, the first thing on an echidna's mind in the morning is finding food. However, this creature's tiny eyes give it poor eyesight. Therefore, as it is mostly unable to use its sight to find its next meal, it uses its acute sense of smell. It also uses its sensitive snout. On the long-billed echidna's snout are 2,000 electroreceptors, and the short-billed echidna has 400 electroreceptors on its snout. Electroreceptors are used by several types of animals to pick-up the electrical fields given off by other animals. An echidna can sense the electric field of its favorite food and home in on it in a flash!

The short-beaked echidna has 400 electroreceptors on its snout in order to detect its food!
What do echidnas like to eat, anyway? Long-billed echidnas prefer to snack on worms and insect larva. Short-billed echidnas on the other hand like eating ants and termites, hence their informal name. Once finding an ant or termite nest, a short-billed echidna uses its sharp hand claws to rip it open. Since it lacks teeth, it has a long, sticky tongue in order to lap up its food. Its tongue can be six inches long! The long-billed echidna also uses its tongue to collect food, but its tongue is covered in tiny spikes to ensure the prey does not escape. Yikes!

The skull of the long-beaked echidna is designed to contain that six-inch tongue. Like an anteater, the tongue helps the animal slurp up insects.
As a monotreme, the echidna lays eggs instead of giving birth to live young like most mammals do. At the end of her three to four week gestation period, the mother echidna will lay a single egg (occasionally two or three eggs are laid). The jelly bean-sized, 0.02-ounce baby, called a puggle, hatches ten days later. And as if this mammal wasn't weird enough, the puggle is kept in a pouch (like kangaroo joeys!) until it grows spines. The spines do not grow in until the puggle is about 53 days old; after spines grow in, the mother keeps her baby in a burrow. Amazingly, this little puggle is already capable of holding onto its mother's hair in the pouch using tiny, transparent claws. Most mammals feed their babies milk from their teats, something the mother echidna lacks. Instead, the milk just oozes through the skin out of special glands in her pouch. After the baby is dependent of its mother's pouch, the mother echidna continues to return to the burrow every five to ten days for a feeding until the baby is ready to go off on its own at 7 months of age.

One cannot look at the echidna without eyeing those prickly quills!
Echidnas are rather long-lived for an animal of their size, living up to 58 years old in zoos (the lifespan of wild animals is unknown), but this is only so long as they can stay safe from predators! For protection, you probably guessed they use their sharp quills. They tend to take great care of their quills, often using their claws to remove insects and dirt that might be stuck in the quills. Predators of the echidna include dingoes, foxes, goannas and domestic dogs and cats. Fortunately, God created echidnas with all the necessary tools to defend themselves. Sometimes, echidnas will dig themselves into the ground until only their quills are exposed. Other times, they will simply curl themselves up into a spiny ball. No predator wants a mouthful of quills, so they leave the echidna alone. Despite its appearance, the echidna is an accomplished swimmer and tree climber if the need to do these activities arose.

Echidnas will curl up into a spiky ball if threatened by a predator.
Spiky, ant-and-termite eating, egg-laying and just plain weird, the echidna wonderfully demonstrates what our amazing God can create out of nothing more than...well, nothing! In the second part of this series, we will look at the other monotreme: the platypus!

Put a fedora on him and this short-billed echidna looks ready to become Perry the Platypus' sidekick!


DisclaimerMany (or in some cases all) of the photographs and images above are not mine. If you own one or more of them and would like them to be removed, please kindly let me know.

Friday, February 13, 2015

Rerun Article: How Birds Say, "I Love You."

Valentine's Day is tomorrow! Time for love, chocolate, flowers and cards. Nice, right? Today's article is a rerun from a couple of years ago, but if you haven't read it already, I would also suggest reading last week's, which digs into the history of Valentine's Day. It's pretty interesting stuff.

Days till:
It is: 1 days till Valentine's Day
It is: 3 days till President's Day
It is: 32 days till St. Patrick's Day

In the Spotlight:
The Masrani Global Corporation website has updated once again, this time to give us some detail on a division of the InGen company called InGen Security. They are responsible for keeping Jurassic World (the theme park) safe from obvious threats. The head of this operation is Vic Hoskins. Much to my delight, the website also reveals that Hoskins and his team of security officers were responsible for dealing with the escaped Pteranodons that flew from Isla Sorna in 2001! I was always wondering what happened to those pterosaurs, and I finally know! You can check out the website provided by the link above and watch the video from the website about InGen Security down below:

Topic of the Week by Christian Ryan
Valentine’s Day is here! Love is in the air for many. I don’t know about you, but some people do some pretty strange things to attract the “object of desire”. However these strange things people do is nothing compared to what amazing lengths animals go to attract a mate, birds in particular. Birds have a number of ways to attract members of the opposite sex. Normally, it is the male who does the attracting and unlike humans, is normally the most colorful and vibrant of the two genders. So this Valentine’s Day, lend an ear as we explore “Love in the World of Birds” (or perhaps I should have said, “Lend a pair of eyes” considering you are reading)!

One of the most popular of all birds can be found in South East Asia where it will do an amazing display of color to attract a female. We all know what this bird is – the peacock! This bird, also known as the peafowl has a thing for style. Did you know that there are three different species of peacocks? They are:

Green Peacock
Congo Peacock
Indian Peacock
While the Green and Congo Peacocks are interesting, they aren’t what we normally think of when you hear peacock, so I’ll just stick with the Indian Peacock today, the most elaborate of the peacock genus. You might already know that it is the male peacocks that have that beautiful fan of feathers on their tails. But did you know that much of the male peacocks coloration does not come from pigment? That’s right! Their feathers are actually iridescent. This means that the beautiful colors are made when light hits the feathers and bounces off of them and into the eyes of the observer. So in the dark, both male and female peacocks (called peahens) are dull colored, but in the light, the male can be seen in shades of blues and greens. Females are normally a mixture of dull greens, browns and grays.

A male peacock in a tree; yes, they CAN fly!
When a male peacock is in the mood for love, he really knows how to strut his stuff – he fans out that beautiful fan (called a “train”) endowed with hundreds of iridescent “eyes”. Then with his train open wide, he will strut and prance around and sometimes will turn around to display his tail. And if the female isn’t paying much attention (which is more often than not), he simply calls to her. Sometimes to woo her into being his mate, a male peacock will display his tail over some food to get her into a form of courtship feeding. The peacock’s tail, while not only attractive, can also be used to direct the sound of a male’s voice toward a female’s ears because of its satalite dish-like shape. Cool, huh? And if that’s not enough, the peacock also uses its tail to warn its mates and young that danger is nearby before flying up to the nearest tree. While both Indian and Green peacocks are believed to be polygamous, it has been suggested by some that the Green peacock is actually monogamous.

A male peacock courting a peahen. Do you think she's impressed?
A mother peahen with her chicks
You can hardly tell it now, but yes, this little guy is a peacock chick!
If peacocks are some of the most beautiful birds, then the Sage Grouse takes the second place prize for the Weirdest Courtship Displays (second only to Birds of Paradise, which I’ll talk about later). The Sage Grouse is the largest grouse in North America and when they are in the mood for love, they let everybody know about it – with sounds! Male and female Sage Grouse will gather in groups, called leks, in open clearings and begin to strut. Like peacocks, they also fan out their tail feathers but they aren’t as long as those of the peacock. Then to attract females who are nearby, the males will begin to inflate two large sacks on their chests. These two sacks produce a sound that sounds like a high-pitched bouncy ball. With every sound, the sacks bounce. While the sound may sound silly to us, female Sage Grouse can’t resist a male with a fine singing voice. Only the most successful males get to mate, and normally there are only two successful males per lek.

A male Sage Grouse, see the two yellow sacks on his chest?
To see a visual display of the Sage Grouse, click on the video below:

Some birds get real noisy to attract mates. Others just get plain showy. When a male Frigatebird wants to attract the love of his life, he pours his heart out – almost literally! These birds live by the ocean in large groups and males of the species don’t look like anything special; in fact, they are almost identical to the females except that females have white chest feathers and light blue-colored beaks, while the beaks and chest feathers of males are black. When an attractive female flies by a male sitting in either a tree or on a cliff, he will inflate a loose patch of skin on the throat. When inflated, it almost looks like a big red heart! (When I was little, I used to think the pouch was caused when the Frigatebird swallowed a strawberry!) After his sweetheart sees a male she likes, she will fly down to him and they start the courtship process. Frigatebirds are monogamous creatures and are great parents. Both parents will faithfully care for their single chick for a full three months until it’s ready to go out on its own. When the next breeding season comes, Frigatebirds choose a new mate. But I don’t think finding a new mate is ever a challenge for these birds – what female Frigatebird can resist a male with a big heart?

A few male Frigatebirds with their pouches inflated
A Frigatebird couple. "What a big pouch you have!" says the female. "The better to woo you with my dear," says the male.
A male Frigatebird with a BIG pouch

Little Huts in the Woods

This image came from here

This image came from here
This image came from here
Who do you think made these huts? Animal lovers who wanted to make a home for some birds? Nope. No human hands touched these huts. In the Bible, it is made clear that love is not an emotion, but rather an action (and the sentimental feeling we from someone we love is the result of real love). You can read an excellent passage about love in 1 Corinthians chapter 13. The aptly named Bowerbird seems to follow this love-as-action rule (even though birds don’t feel love like humans do). When the breeding season for bowerbirds comes around, males get really creative. While the male bowerbird doesn’t look like a very special bird, looks aren’t important when they want to attract a mate. Instead, they make a bower of love. Depending on the species, male bowerbirds will look around their forest home (in Australia and New Guinea) for certain materials to make a bower. Today we will focus on two species of bowerbirds: the Satin Bowerbird (pronounced sat-in) and the Vogelkop bowerbird (pronounced FOH-gull-kop). Both species are unique in their own ways. The Vogelkop bowerbird makes one of the most extravagant bowers. While the bower itself looks no different from its neighbors’, each bowerbird adds unique arrangements to their own bowerbird. Some go for a berry-style bower, others for flowers and leaves, and others for pebbles, shiny beetles or deer dung, and some like the trash we humans leave behind.

A Vogelkop Bowerbird observing a bower (this image came from this link)
Satin bowerbirds have a blue tint in their feathers; perhaps this is why they’re blue for the color blue. They will put a variety of objects in and surrounding the bower – as long as their blue! These items can consist of things in nature such as feathers or berries and on the not-so-natural side, plastic caps, paperclips and even car keys! (So if you ever go to Australia, be careful what you put on the ground!) And if that’s not enough, they will even mash up little plant bits and after mixing it with saliva, “paint” the newly made mixture on the walls of the inside of the bower! (Guys, don’t try this at home, human females don’t like a paint made in this way as much as bowerbird females do) Talk about DIY!

A male Satin Bowerbird

A female Satin Bowerbird
But in the end, it’s the female bowerbird that chooses which male she mates with. When a female comes by, a male will sing a little “love song” to his potential mate and if she likes the sound, she will come down and inspect the bower. If she likes the bower, she will mate with the hard-working male and if not, she flies off and continues the search. After mating, the female flies off to make a nest while the male revises his bower to hopefully suit the next female that passes by.

The Satin Bowerbird goes blue for blue! 
Birds-of-Paradise is a group of birds that are perhaps some of the strangest dancers in the bird world. Males and females are vastly different from each other – females are drab-colored and feathered while males have elaborate feathers and feather patterns. There are many species of Birds-of-Paradise and each species has many different dances they use to attract a mate. Take the Parotia, nicknamed the “six-plumed birds of paradise” because they have six quills on their heads. On the males, the ornamental plumage consists of the six head plumes with black oval-shaped tips, a black collar around the neck, decomposed feathers that can be spread out around the bird like a ballerina’s skirt. When they are in the mood for love, they will twirl around and around like a ballerina in an area where the bird has cleared of leaves. It might also hop from one foot or bob its head from side to side. Apparently, this funny dance gets the ladies attention.

The Six-Plumed Bird of Paradise likes to spin around like a ballerina to attract mates (this image came from here)

Birds of all shapes and sizes dance around to attract mates whenever their breeding seasons arrive. Evolutionists will tell you that these birds evolved another type of animal. Their ideas change as so-called new “evidence” is found, but for the moment, they believe that birds evolved from dinosaurs. Now, we have no evidence for feathered dinosaurs, so where on earth did birds get their beautiful courtship displays from? (The dinosaurs-to-bird idea is very extensive, so I’ll save this for another day) Evolutionists have no idea. Even Charles Darwin, the evolutionist of evolutionists said to Asa Gray that “. . . [the] sight of a feather in a peacock’s tail, whenever I gaze at it, makes me sick!” Evolutionists can’t tell us where on earth these amazingly designed birds evolved their displays from.

However, the Bible has the answer. In the first chapter of Genesis (Genesis 1:20-22), it says that God created birds on the fifth day of the week God used to create everything. Dinosaurs meanwhile were created on the sixth day of the Creation week along with the other land animals (Genesis 1:24-25). So the reason evolutionists can’t find what animal evolved into birds that would have given them their displays is because there isn’t such an animal. God created these birds just as we find them (not counting the natural selection that occurs within a “Genesis Kind”) only about 6,000 years ago. And what amazing birds God made!

Before I end my post today, I’d like to bring up a clip from a Discovery Channel television series that I have watched called Dinosaur Revolution. While true, dinosaurs didn’t evolve into birds millions of years ago (evolution and the belief in millions of years isn’t true in the first place!), it doesn’t rule out that dinosaurs didn’t have feathers. We just don’t have evidence for feathered dinosaurs! If dinosaurs had feathers, they could have used them to attract mates. So on this Valentine’s Day, lets watch a dramatic depiction of a male Gigantoraptor as he tries to win the heart of a female of the same species (I bet you’ve never seen a dinosaur dancing to Spanish-styled music!). Will she be impressed? Or will she ditch him for another male? Only one way to find out:

Have a HAPPY VALENTINE'S Day Everyone!

Disclaimer: Many (or in some cases all) of the photographs and images above are not mine. If you own one or more of them and would like them to be removed, please kindly let me know.