Thursday, December 3, 2009

Cute -- it's what's for dinner, Part II

When Disney does it, that whole circle of life thing just feels so warm and fuzzy.
In the wild, not so much.
Consider the penguin and the skua (playing the role of an Antarctic Simba).
(Full disclosure: the pictures here were drawn from two different days, but the scenario they represent is a common one.)
Our penguin couple goes to great lengths to build a nest out of rocks and protect, fighting off other penguins for the territory and the stones. Mama lays her egg. Dad stays with the egg to warm and protect it.

Along comes the skua, a scavenger and egg hunter of the first order. It, too, needs to hatch its young, and to store the energy to lay the egg and tend to its coming chicks. You know where this is going.


The skua, with cunning and aggressiveness, snags the penguin egg from its nest and flies off.
Then comes dinner.


Also, leopard seals like this one ...

... transform adult penguins into this.




2 comments:

Anonymous said...

Nature is unforgiving. Animals will seek out the best source of food. Be glad that we are not toward the bottom of the food chain.
KCPL8R

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