Watching Birds each day is Auspicious, it has always been so!

“Lioness waiting for rain” in October 2007 in Tarangire NP – less than two hours driving time from the city of Arusha

The pictures in this post were taken in Tanzania in the “late cool-dry” of September and early October.
The middle of October usually heralds the end of the long, cool, dry. The time when northern Tanzania gratefully receives its first showers of rain after four months of drought.

Therefore this is one time of the year when I try to return to the field to relish the migratory movements of birds. Eagerly anticipating wonderful experiences albeit often with a bone dry focus to each day.

What’s with Auspicious?

The first real waves of my most beloved bird migrants, the Palearctic passerines, start to trickle through in October. These little waves become a flood (each year we pray) during November and December.
Thus the last two months of each “Roman year” typically include my best and busiest birding days, often with happy customers, also coming from afar, who simply want to share the joy!

White Storks arriving from Europe against the still active carbonite volcano of Ol-Doinyo Lengai, which is Masai for “the Home of God”

I know only too well that this century is a time of cataclysmic change. Brought about by the accelerating environmental degradation first unleashed by our species some five thousand years ago.

By man, yes I do mean man. Or men. The men who invented and then forced worship upon us all. Submission to a vengeful sky-(man)-God. The same men who fought to control ever greater fields of grain. Accumulating Capital. Making Wild Nature into “the enemy”. Men who increasingly tried to turn their back on Nature. Entirely. Monotheistic, mono-dimensional man. Men who confuse sterility with health. And men who now want men to utterly undermine women. To take-over the human female form. In essence Man-unkind!

At such a time the activities of birds, especially their flight, and above all their seasonal migrations, are vital indicators of the state of our planet’s health.

The study of bird movements may reveal not only what has happened, but what is happening now, and furthermore what might be about to come our way.

So don’t you think, as I do, that the so-called “leaders” should watch birds like we do! You know them: the men on the screen, a very few are women. Women one could suggest who are behaving so badly that it’s as if they are pretending to be men, nevertheless it is usually sad old men who are in control.

The “leaders” (and the hidden financiers who lurk behind these actors on a stage, especially those) should begin to humbly take notice of Nature. As I do! As a matter of utmost urgency! Please God that they should pay rapt attention to bird migrations. Do It Now!

Why? Let’s simply look back through time at the origins of one European word that’s very much in use, even today – “Auspicious“:

Auspicious comes into English from the 1590s, “of good omen,”
from Latin auspicium. At a time when the City of London’s maritime empire was really ‘taking-off’. Those of us living in the “Global South” we should all know something of the horrors unleashed in those times. Feel it in our blood.

Auspicious meant “divination by observing the flight of birds.” It came from auspex (genitive auspicis).

Consider another word – augur,” literally:
one who takes signs from the flight of birds.

You can look-up the word here :

Synonyms: hopeful, bright, encouraging, fair, golden, heartening, likely, optimistic, promising, propitious, roseate, rose-colored, rosy, upbeat

Antonyms: bleak, dark, depressing, desperate, discouraging, disheartening, dismal, downbeat, dreary, gloomy, hopeless, inauspicious, pessimistic, unencouraging, unlikely, unpromising, unpropitious

So we see that the Roman Empire was not wholly without some ecological merit and, I suppose, neither are the current ridiculous imperial powers on our one and only planet. By that I mean the financiers behind what I used to call the Sino-Obamans –
recent rulers who have conspired to “keep things more or less as they have ever been”.

Those who are sacrificing the future of life on Earth for digital financial profit. Numbers flickering on electronic screens in Wall Street, in the City of London, in Washington DC and other oppositional “poles” around the northern hemisphere. They are all addicted to the growth of profit. Growth that is in truth so thoroughly morbid that it’s more a measurement of our collective and imminent mortality.

So focused are these men on gaming their glittering numbers that we will soon find ourselves at the end of their empire. Of yet another stupid empire. In their case the TCD in this C21 AD, aka the TCE. The Turbo-Capitalist Dynasty or Empire.

At this time I feel that the literary legacy of the Romans has far more to commend it.

That, at least, remains Auspicious !

Wildebeest seeking shade in the cool dry season in the Great Rift Valley in Tanzania (2007)

The wildebeest photo was taken in the Rift Valley in Maasailand, just 15 km north of the ‘Arusha to Ngorongoro Crater/ Serengeti road, the grest tourism highway’. Near the bourgeoning town of Mto wa Mbu. Words which translates to English as the “River of Mosquitoes”.

A delightful bird this Striped Kingfisher is in semaphore song display (photo : Steve Chalmers – October 2007)

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