The World’s Strangest Bird

Genesis 18:14a
“Is any thing too hard for the LORD?”

One could say that the South American Hoatzin is truly a strange bird. It makes a striking sight with its blue skin and red eyes, sporting a four inch crest of spiky feathers on its head. Young Hoatzin have claws on their wings, allowing them to climb trees just like a monkey. This bird becomes an expert underwater swimmer before if can even fly.

Strangest BirdThe Hoatzin has one more odd characteristic that scientists find the most puzzling of all. Ninety five percent of its diet is leaves. It’s the only bird known to digest its food the same way cows and other ruminants do. Just like ruminants, the Hoatzin uses bacteria to break down the plant material it eats in a special chamber above its stomach.

How do evolutionists explain this oddity? As one evolutionary scientist who has studied the Hoatzin for decades said, “Hoatzins don’t seem to follow the rules of evolution.” While he admitted to being creative in being able to come up with evolutionary explanations for creatures, he said that he was never able to arrive at an evolutionary explanation for the Hoatzin’s digestive arrangement.

This leads us to glorify God for one more aspect of His creative work. In creating the Hoatzin, He was able to design a creature that defies any explanation humans might try to invent to deny that He is the Creator. Truly, the creation declares His handiwork!

Dear Father, I thank You that Your work bears witness to Your existence far better than could any human being. Yet, You depend on us human beings who know of Your love to us in Christ to communicate the gospel of forgiveness through Christ to others in this world. Enable me to offer a better witness. In Jesus’ Name. Amen.

Cowen, Ron. 1989. “Alimentary, my dear Hoatzin.” Science News, v. 136, Oct. 21, p. 269. Photo: Courtesy of Linda de Volder. Licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license.