Traveler’s Notebook: A highlight of a recent trip to New Zealand was watching a couple of kiwi birds at a sanctuary in Queenstown. Because these wonderful, endangered birds are nocturnal, in order to see them in the daytime, you had to stumble into a blackened room and wait a few minutes ’til your eyes adjusted. Then the red lightbulbs could illuminate (barely) the flightless kiwi running around their habitat, sticking their incredibly long beaks with the nostrils curiously at the tip into every nook and cranny looking for dinner.

There’s a lot to like about the kiwi. For one thing, it recently discredited snotty, atheistic evolutionists. They claimed that the kiwi must have evolved from much larger, flightless birds, such as New Zealand’s extinct moa, because the kiwi lays such an enormous egg. Of course, they didn’t have any physical evidence whatsoever, such as bona fide transitional skeletons showing how the 12-foot-tall moa evolved down into the 18-inch tall kiwi. They just had a hunch on account of the ginormous egg that the kiwi bird lays. The evolutionagoogooists theorized that the bird’s body evolved downward in size to just about chicken height and weight, but the egg forgot to “devolve” in size along with the bird’s body because of some kind of unexplained glitch. (Have you noticed how MANY hunches and unexplained glitches there are in evolutionary theory? LOL) You can read more: http://www.audubon.org/news/why-kiwis-egg-so-big

But there’s this “thing” called mitochondrial DNA studies. They show that nooooo, the kiwi is actually closely related to the elephant bird in Africa, and not to those taller birds at all. Ha, ha! So there! Those crazy evolutionolocuckooists — always making things up.

 

For those who can see the obvious, that God provided each creature in His world with self-defense that made sense in the environments in which they would live, it’s clear that a big, honkin’ egg with lots of yolk would make sense for a flightless bird chick whose native country had no predators on land (New Zealand had zero land mammals who posed a threat to baby kiwis) but lots of predators from overhead (other birds).

A kiwi egg weighs approximately 16  ounces. It has nearly twice as much yolk as chicks of other bird species. The kiwi chick can live off the extra yolk for the first week of life. After that, kiwis can fend for themselves. Tra la!

I love that mama and papa kiwis are monogamous, often for 20 years or more. After the huge annual job of incubating and laying such a huge egg, the mama bird gets to go off duty. The papa bird incubates the egg for two or three more months. Teamwork!

But waaaaait a minute. Back to that egg size. At 16 ounces, that is 20 to 25% of the mother bird’s body weight. That would be like a typical American woman giving birth to a . . . 4-YEAR-OLD!!! YOWSA!!!

The largest egg in the world is the ostrich egg. But it usually weighs just 2% as much as mom. So the kiwi mamas are world champions!

No wonder everybody celebrates them in New Zealand. I’m a big fan now, too!