Great-tailed Grackle

Great Tailed Grackle


The great-tailed grackle pictured above is an immature male. When he grows a little older the tail will be a little longer still and the eye will become bright yellow. This species of grackle is fairly common where I live, gathering in roosting trees to make a ruckus or just hanging out in parking lots looking for easy meals.

Grackles have a habit I find fascinating. When they fly they will take their long tail and twist it into a vertical position. Like every other bird they hold their tail horizontally when they are sitting, and often when they are flying. In fact every other type of bird fly with their tails horizontal. But the mature males, which have remarkable tails, will often turn them into a vertical rudder after takeoff.

I have always wanted to get a picture of this behavior, but as of yet I have failed. Which is how you ended up with the picture above instead.

For a bird, flight requires cooperation with the air. There are certain patterns birds follow when working out this cooperation. I suppose you could think of this as the tried and true, safe way of accomplishing flight. But the Grackle tried something new and found a better way. I wonder what type of person it takes to come up with a completely different way to do something.

A Christ follower is what immediately comes to mind. Romans 12:1-2 (HCSB) says “Do not be conformed to this age, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may discern what is the good, pleasing, and perfect will of God.” This is just one of many passages indicating we are to do things in a different way than the rest of the world.