February 28, 2014

The Bird and the Giraffe: Their Symbiotic Relationship


© Barbara V. Evers, Sorry no picture of the bird!
If you're on Facebook, you've probably noticed the multitudes of quizzes you can take to determine "Which one are you?"  I've taken the Disney Princess assessment (Belle), the What Career Should You Actually Have (CEO), the Which Pet Should You Have (a hedgehog!), and so many more.  When it came to What Kind of Bird Are You, I got the great horned owl.

Sometimes, I post the answer to these quizzes (all of them appear to come from Buzzfeed.com if you're interested), but if the answer sounds off or weird, I don't bother.  I did post the great horned owl, which prompted a writer friend to ask:  "Hmm.  Is that owl perched on a giraffe?:

If the question sounds offbeat to you, then you might want to check some of my posts about giraffes.  I love giraffes and use them in the novel I'm hoping to get published some day.  The irony of this question falls in the answer (as most ironic questions do).  The giraffe does allow a bird to perch on its hide in exchange for some grooming.  Not the owl, of course, but the oxpecker, sometimes known as the tick bird, sustains a symbiotic relationship with the giraffe.  The bird cleans bugs off the giraffe, a nice little bonus for letting a tiny bird ride around on you, and in exchange, the bird gets its dinner.

As interesting an animal as the giraffe is, to me at least, I'm amazed how little I can find to read about them. I've read every book I can get my hands on, including finding old books on Amazon and some of the more recent books, such as Tall Blondes and the heartbreaking story, Giraffe. However, if you know of a giraffe book, feel free to tell me about it in the comments below. Maybe it will be one I haven't read. Or share your own interesting facts about your favorite animal.  Giraffe or not, I love animals.

4 comments:

Valerie Keiser Norris said...

Aren't there other animals with the same sort of symbiotic relationship? I'm thinking rhinos and some sort of bird...

You know me. I'm comfortable with human animals only.

Chris Evers said...

Information about giraffes not common, but Riley thoroughly enjoyed many if her books that include them :-)

Barbara V. Evers said...

Valerie, many animals have symbiotic relationships. The rhino seems to enjoy the oxpeckers, too.

Barbara V. Evers said...

Chris, as she should. All of my grand babies shall enjoy animals, especially giraffes.