NAIROBI PARK DIARY

The chick stick

A colourful flock of superb starlings makes for wonderful vieweing

In Summary

• Sometimes grown-ups have more to do than just feed youngsters

Superb starling with chick and stick
Superb starling with chick and stick
Image: GARETH JONES

Early on a fresh, crisp summer morning near the Kingfisher picnic sight, we had an interesting sighting. Ahead of us, a colourful flock of superb starlings looked wonderful with their beautiful shining feathers as the sun shone on them.

After stopping briefly to watch them, I was just about to start the vehicle engine when I noticed a superb starling landing with a dry stick in its beak. In a brief moment, a young chick appeared and moved quickly towards the adult bird. The chick was no doubt very keen to have breakfast in the form of whatever edible meal was presented by the parent bird.

However, with our human logic, it is often hard to imagine bird logic. But I did imagine for a moment that this was actually “Chick stick lesson #101”. With this superb starling seemingly educating its chick, as if it was trying to say, “If it is very hard and firm and does not squirm, it is not a worm.”

It was also very amusing to watch the chick repeatedly try to take the stick from the adult bird. Hopefully, the chick did learn the “stick lesson”, and that sometimes grown-ups have more to do than just feed youngsters. Maybe the stick was eventually put to good use to help build a nest for future chicks?

I always find it a joy to see birds when driving in the park. God has created so such amazing diversity. While driving away, I reflected on our human lifestyles. Perhaps we could all learn a lesson from the “chick stick” example.

At times we chase after dead and dry meaningless worldly things, when we should rather be seeking the best of what life has to offer. Mankind is supposed to be caring about creation. Pray our hearts change to love life.

For information on the park you can link to the following website  www.kws.go.ke