Sunday, June 17, 2007


Reflections on My Dad

Okay, before I begin with my "Animal Dads" segment, I must pay tribute to my own dad, Reuben. My dad is turning 79 this year, and I'm turning 35. That means he was 44 years old when I was born, and as I was growing up, many people mistook me for his granddaughter rather than his daughter. I'm thinking that must have been mighty embarrassing for him at times. I have no recollection of him with any hair color other than gray or white. I sort of resented the fact that I had an older father until I moved away from home and could appreciate his wisdom and experience a whole lot more. My dad is the best dad in the whole wide world. He worked hard for his family when I was growing up, and still does. . . . even at the age of (almost) 79, he does the circuit around the homes of his children and helps them with renovations, yard projects and entertaining the grandchildren. My dad is funny without trying. Our family has been known to laugh hysterically for extended moments over comments he makes or things he does, when he isn't even trying to be funny. Playing the game Balderdash with him is particularly hilarious . . . his definitions are priceless. My dad is a man of God and I know he prays for each of his children, their spouses and grandchildren consistently. He is a source of encouragement and unconditional love. He is accepting and generous. I love my dad!

To My Husband

At this time I must also pay tribute to my husband, Wayne, who, despite many hardships in parenting Thomas for many years without the help of a wife, continues to amaze me everyday with his dedication and devotion to his family. He works hard for us so that we can have our needs met, plus more. He's fun, spontaneous and full of stories. He's interested in his boy's activities and spends time with them, doing things they enjoy. And he teaches them in the ways of manhood whenever possible.

Thank you, God (my Heavenly Father), for blessing me with an earthly father and a husband, both of which I am so proud to call mine.

Now, onto the ANIMAL DADS segment of my post. I hope you enjoy this!

Animal Dads

Most animals never even see their parents! Many never meet their fathers and some never meet their mothers, either. Some insects, fish, amphibians and reptiles hatch from fertilized eggs and face life completely alone. When animals are raised by parents, it's most often the mother who does the rearing. But we found some unusual animal dads.

Catfish: A father sea catfish keeps the eggs of his young in his mouth until they are ready to hatch. He will not eat until his young are born, which may take several weeks.

red tailed catfish
credit: Daesaeng Corporation

Cockroach: A father cockroach eats bird droppings to obtain precious nitrogen, which he carries back to feed his young.

Duck: Most male ducks live as bachelors, but the ruddy duck of North America helps care for his young.

Earthworms: Since earthworms have both male and female sex organs, every earthworm can be both a mother and a father! Animals that have both male and female organs are called hermaphrodites.

Frog: The male Darwin frog hatches his eggs in a pouch in his mouth. He can eat and continue about his business until his tadpoles lose their tails, become tiny frogs, and jump out of his mouth!

Monkey: Marmosets are tiny South American monkeys. The fathers take care of their babies from birth. When the marmoset is born, the father cleans it, then carries it to the mother only when it needs to be nursed. When the baby can eat solid food, the father will feed it.

Penguin: A father Emperor penguin withstands the Antarctic cold for 60 days or more to protect his eggs, which he keeps on his feet, covered with a feathered flap. During this entire time he doesn't eat a thing. Most father penguins lose about 25 pounds while they wait for their babies to hatch. Afterward, they feed the chicks a special liquid from their throats. When the mother penguins return to care for the young, the fathers go to sea to eat and rest.

Rhea: Rheas are large South American birds similar to ostriches. Father rhea takes sole care of his young. From eggs to chicks, he feeds, defends, and protects them until they are old enough to survive on their own.

Sand grouse: A father Namaqua sand grouse of Africa's Kalahari Desert flies as far as 50 miles a day in order to soak himself in water and return to his nest, where his chicks can drink from his feathers!

Sea horse: The male sea horse has a pouch in which the mother lays her eggs. The father then looks after the eggs for about two months, until they hatch and leave the pouch. He continues to protect the young until they are able to live on their own.

yellow seahorse
credit: John White

Siamese fighting fish: When the mother lays her eggs, the father catches them in his mouth, then drops them into a nest he has prepared. He guards the nest and protects the baby fish when they hatch.

Wolf: When the mother wolf gives birth to pups, the father stands guard outside their den and brings food to the mother and pups. As they grow, he not only plays with them but also teaches them how to survive. Wolves continue to live together much as human families do.

Credits to:

1 comment:

technophile_in_euphony said...

Your compilation on animal dads was worth reading. Keep up the good work.