How this waterbird whose tail constantly wags up and down created the Earth
"[T]he great God ... determined to render the world inhabitable. He, therefore,
made a water-wagtail, and sent him down from heaven to produce the Earth. When
[the bird] descended and saw what a dreadfully shocking condition the elements
were in, and how they were mixed up in confusion, he was almost at his wits'
end to know how to perform his allotted task. But he thought of a way, for he
fluttered over the waters with his wings, trampled upon the muddy matter with
his feet, and beat it down with his tail, till, after a very long time of
fluttering, trampling, and tail wagging, dry places appeared, and the waters
became ocean. In this way the worlds were gradually raised and made to stand
out of the waters and caused to float about upon them.
"Therefore, the Ainu call the world moshiri—i.e., "floating Earth," and
hold the water-wagtail in great esteem ... Thus it happens that at the present
day even whenever this bird is seen he is sure to be found beating the Earth
with his tail."