Monday, January 08, 2007

A Bird in the Land...

Making my way through the Pentateuch, I came across the section in Deuteronomy 14 regarding clean and unclean food. Included in the list of birds that the Israelites were not to consume was a little critter called a "hoopoe" (Deut 14:18). I was hanging with Moses when he was listing the "bearded vulture," "nighthawk," and "Sea Gull." But what in the hound-dog is a hoopoe, I gracefully thought. Well, this was enough to compel me to get out my detective's cap and click over to Wikipedia embark on a digitalized epic journey to discover what kind of creature this was. Result: Behold, the Hoopoe.


Its very cool scientific name is Upupa epops, pronounced, OOO papa EE pops! It flies erratically, is fond of dust-baths, and appears to be sporting a sweet mohawk. It was probably considered unclean because it was a forager and rooted around in the dirt to find its main diet of insects and worms.
Now you know more about the Hoopoe than most people in the world. Since it was an "unclean" bird, the Israelites most assuredly did not eat it. So now when I think of the Israelites wandering through the wilderness, I'll think (however hermeneutically erroneously) of these little critters hopping through camp and catching some rays with them. Http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hoopoe

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