“For the earth which drinketh in the rain that cometh oft upon it, and bringeth forth herbs meet for them by whom it is dressed, receiveth blessing from God….”
Many people like to have a nice perfume around the house. They brew a potpourri of mint, citronella, lavender and similar fragrant plants to make home smell more like home. But humans aren’t the only creatures that appreciate a nice smell around their house.
During field studies, scientists have found that a small bird called the Corsican Blue Tit also likes to have a pleasant-smelling nest. This was an unexpected discovery, made quite accidentally when one researcher discovered various sprigs of aromatic plants in dozens of nests. When she starts to lay her eggs, the female bird will begin keeping her nest stocked with fresh, fragrant herbs until all the eggs hatch. The birds prefer yarrow, citronella, mint and lavender. When researchers secretly removed these herbs from the nests that they were observing, the parent birds were quick to replace the fragrant sprigs with others. It also turns out that these herbs also have disinfectant and anti-pest characteristics. They inhibit bacteria and fungi and act as mosquito repellents. Rather than simply beautifying their nests or adding a nice perfume, the birds are also protecting their offspring from diseases and pests. You might wonder, Who taught them to do this?
As the Bible says, herbs are a blessing from God. They are not just a blessing to man, but also to many of God’s creatures.
Lord, I thank You for all of the blessings You have given us. I especially thank You that You sent Your Son to save us. Amen.
Discover, 11/02, p. 13, Josie Glausiusz, “Eau D’Oiseau.” Photo: South Island Takah?, one of a large number of rails, which also includes the Corsican Blue Tit. Courtesy of Glen Fergus. Licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 2.5 Generic license.