Saturday, July 23, 2011

Benny's Toupée

Meet Benny.

Benny is a baby Bald Eagle.  
He was born on April 3, 2011. 
His parents are two very famous Bald Eagles in Iowa.  
They are called the Decorah Eagles.
 They have had their own reality TV show since 2007.  

The Decorah Eagle's nest is 6 feet long and weighs over a ton! 
It is quite a spectacular house, even if you aren't a bird!

Benny's parents became famous overnight, 
not because they did anything special, 
but because they are Bald Eagles, 
an endangered species in the USA.

A few scientists put a webcam in Benny's nest.  
Over time, people from all over the world 
learned about the rare Bald Eagle eggs 
and watched closely as they hatched...

One at a time, 
on three different days 
in the same week. 

What happened next, nobody could have guessed.

Here is Benny entering the world...

Benny, the bald eagle, is the middle child in his family.  
His parents love him so much, but Benny still struggles for attention.

You see, he is not the eldest, like his brother, who gets all of the big responsibilities -- like watching the others in the nest when his parents leave.

He's not the baby either, so his parents are not overly protective of Benny.  They actually encourage him to follow in the footsteps of his older brother and take flight when he does.

Benny will do as his parents wish, but he wants more.

Then, one day Benny thought of the best idea ever!

He began to collect feathers and twine from his nest and constructed the most colorful and sturdy toupee that any bald eagle will ever see!

He put it on proudly and hopped over to his mama to show her his masterpiece!

"Look Ma!" Benny hollered.

"What do you have on your head, son?" Mama replied.

"It's a toupee Mama!  So that we Bald Eagles do not have to be ashamed of being bald anymore! Isn't it great?" Benny asked.

"Oh yes, baby.  It is great!  Except one thing.  Bald Eagles do not need toupees, Benny," she explained.  "Take that thing off your head right now!"

"But ma-" Benny argued.

His mom stopped him in his tracks,

"Enough Benny.  I think I get what's going on here.  Bald Eagles are not really bald.  We have an entire crown of white feathers on our heads!  However, since the old English word for white was balde, the name kind of stuck."

Benny took off his toupee and frowned.  
"You mean that my toupee idea was a bad one?"

His Mama hugged him, 
"No, Benny.  Your idea was very creative!  
You thought our species needed help and you tried to give it.  
You are on the right track!  Don't give up.  
Can you think of anything else bald eagles might need?"

"Ummm," thought Benny, "Maybe we need more Mamas and Daddies?"

"Why do you say that, my boy?"

"Just so that all the baby Bald Eagles can have lots of love and attention!" 

"Awww, my little Benny.  Are you feeling looked over?"

"Maybe a little." Benny looked down and choked back his tears.

"Well thankfully you told me!  I have been so busy with all of the cameras around and your brother and sister, that I didn't even notice you were feeling unhappy. 

Benny spread his wings and gave his Mama a BIG BALD EAGLE HUG!!! 

"Thanks Mama.  I needed that.,"  said Benny, and they hugged a good long hug!  

Benny kept his toupee as a reminder to always be himself and to use when his little sister made him play dress up with her.

The End.


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