Hibernating Birds

Kingfisher, Coloured Pencils, Paula Kuitenbrouwer

Long ago people did not know that some birds migrate. They thought the birds hid in holes in the ground and slept all winter. Some people guessed that birds spent the winter in the mud on the bottoms of ponds. Before you dismiss this as silly, think about how strange it must have felt that birds are there and all of the sudden they are gone. People had no clue where these birds went. They couldn’t imagine that birds could fly long distances or fly over water for 500 miles without stopping. And how would birds find their way during daytime and night time? So their thought that birds would hide isn’t that silly. Imagine you see this Kingfisher diving in a pond regularly in search of food. The thought that it would stay in the mud on the bottoms of ponds or that owls would hid in holes in big trees isn’t a big stretch. We now know birds migrate and do not hibernate. We’ve learned birds fly enormous distances and do a fine job navigating with the help of landscapes, stars, the position of the sun and moon, and perhaps with the Earth’s magnetic field.  Clever birds.

To teach my daughter about clever birds, I’ve read to her ‘How do Birds Find Their Way’ by Rona Gans and ‘The Boy Who Drew Birds, a story of John James Audubon’ by Jacqueline Davies. I recommend these books.

at Etsy

33 thoughts on “Hibernating Birds

  1. This is very educational and funny. Indeed, what would I think if my balcony birds were gone? 😦 But, they migrate. I don’t think that Blue Tits and Great Tits migrate so that is why I feed them during the winter!
    Kappacavy (10)


    1. True, Linda, but it is already happening. I’ve learned all creatures need sunlight. But after discovering living creatures in deep caves living without a single sun-ray, we need to re-write the books I read in school. And I’m not even half-a-century old, imagine a century! 🙂


  2. I love the detail in your drawing! Pretty! The information is interesting too and I would agree that we are constantly learning about our world. There is a sentence in the introduction to the Handbook of Nature Study where Anna Botsford Comstock says this very thing, ” While an earnest attempt has been made to make the information in the book accurate, it is to be expected and to be hoped that many discrepancies will be found by those who follow the lessons.” Love that!


  3. Lovely drawing, the feathers look so soft! Sometimes I still can’t believe that birds can migrate halfway across the globe without much stopping and never get lost, I don’t blame the people back then.


  4. Really nice drawing. There’s a huge flock of galah’s that come around every year, very glad they migrate back to the bush, or hide in mud or whatever they do!


  5. Lovely detailed drawing. I’m absolutely amazed at the wonderful way you combine your artwork and creativity with natural science and reading! What a rich education your daughter is receiving!


    1. Hi, Nadene, thanks for stopping by on this blog and thank you for your comment.
      Educating is learning and the more I educate, the more I learn. It is a lovely win-win (as you know educating your daughters so wonderfully yourself).


      1. Thank you so much Paula 🙂 I am so flattered by that as I love Cicely Mary Barker’s little fairies. I have just signed up to your blog and I just visited your Etsy shop. Your work is so delightful. I will certainly be buying something from there.



    1. If you see one, you have no doubt it is a kingfisher.
      Despite the fact that they are so fast, the bright colour blue will make you say: ‘Now that was a kingfisher’.
      I’ve seen kingfishers in Asia and the Netherlands. You have to be dead silent when you approach a lake or brook to catch a glimpse.
      I hope you see one soon.


Discussions are welcome. Thanks for your comments. Gracias por tu comentario. Merci pour vos commentaires. Grazie per i vostri commenti. Obrigado pelo seu comentário.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s