There is perfect order in nature, predictable patterns in growth and behavior that, like the precise movement of the stars in the heavens, say this realm was carefully balanced to work together. You can check references on animal behavior, animal physiology, symbiosis, and other topics and compile an almost endless list of amazing facts about how the natural world functions. Here's a few interesting examples.

In Germany, frogs were once kept as pets because they croaked more loudly when air pressure fell and when bad weather was coming. They acted like primitive living barometers.

We're all fascinated with the diversity of snowflakes. Wilson ‘Snowflake’ Bentley took over 6,000 photographs of individual flakes between the early 1880’s and his death in 1931. No two were alike.

How do birds find their way? Simple. Through a combination of

· Sighting (they don't call it a "bird's eye view" for nothing) features like rivers, coastlines, and mountain ranges.

· Monitoring Earth's magnetic field, apparently with their visual system and with tiny grains of a mineral called magnetite in their heads

· Observing the stars · Using the sun for guidance

· Smell · And probably following their neighbors (many birds migrate in large flocks)

Does it still sound simple? I didn't think so. For example, birds which use magnetic navigation must deal with a small problem -- magnetic north is 1,600 kilometers from the north pole. That means migrants leaving northern Alaska and following magnetic south would be traveling due west! Second, star navigation changes as new constellations appear on the horizon as the birds travel north or south. Although birds have apparently been overcoming these problems for millions of years, only in the past year have scientists figured out how at least one species of bird does it. It seems that the birds recalibrate their magnetic compasses against their star navigation during their rest stops along the migration route. And if they don't have enough time at the rests, they get lost.

The Monarch Butterfly, which weighs only 1/2 gram, flies as much as 2,000 miles to ancestral wintering grounds. How do they even find them?

The longest known migration by a mammal and the only double migration is made by the elephant seals. Twice each year, they migrate from southern California to foraging areas in the northern Pacific. They cover an average of 13,000 miles each year. What guides them?

The molar teeth of elephants do not erupt all at once; rather, a new one grows forward as the existing tooth wears down. The sixth and final pair of molars is worn down at about 60 years (L. africana), so few elephants live beyond this age. No dentures required here. The plan put teeth and animal on the same life span!

The yucca moth is dependent on the yucca plant and vice versa the moth acts as pollinator at the same time that she lays her eggs in the seed pods of the yucca; the larvae hatch and feed on some but not all the seeds. Both organisms benefit the plant is pollinated, and the moth has a source of food for its larvae. Its only one of dozens of symbiotic relationships in nature that had to exist from day one or neither species would have survived!

Abraham Lincoln once remarked that he could see how a man could look at the world and be an atheist, but he could not imagine how a man could look up at the stars and say there is no God. As we look at the natural world and the perfect order of so many amazing things fitting together in harmony, it would be very hard not to believe that there is a God who planned and ordained it.


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