Nature is Sad

ElephantsMourn

This reminds me of an episode of the series Africa by David Attenborough where the mother leaves the herd and waits with her calf while it dies from starvation and dehydration.  A number of people complained about the scene:

One viewer wrote on Twitter: ‘That poor baby elephant and the poor mother having to watch her baby die! #tears had to stop eating my dinner. BBC #Africa warn me next time.’

Another added: ‘How heartbreaking watching the baby elephant calf die and the mother can only walk away. I’m in tears here.’

Emma Reynolds, Mail Online

Thirty-two complaints were received, sixteen for the calf’s death, and another sixteen over the apparent use of emotive background music throughout the episode.

I really only have one thing to say here: nature is a pretty terrible place sometimes.  Bad things happen.  The job of a nature documentary is to show you the realities of this.  Like the show’s producer said:

We are obviously concerned that some viewers have been upset,’ said [James] Honeyborne. ‘As soon as you look at an animal not as a species but as an individual, you do get drawn in and your empathy for that individual character will increase.

‘It is part of the process of looking deeper and creating that more immersive experience.’

One other thing, I thought we all knew that elephants mourn much like humans do?  It’s not exactly a new concept.

Now this has reminded me of a really traumatic scene from a nature documentary.  There’s a Nat Geo documentary called Leopards of Dead Tree Island.  There’s a video here of the events immediately proceeding a cub breaking its pelvis after falling while climbing a tree, and it’s final interaction with its mother.  I still find it incredibly sad, so watch at your own risk.  The video also seems to autoplay once you open the page.  I’m not sure how far through it is until the cub appears, I can’t actually watch it again.

Well that took an unexpected turn.  Here’s photo of a not-dead baby elephant:

baby-elephant

Nature: it’s a pretty nasty, cruel place, but it’s pretty awesome too.

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If you’re reading this anywhere but That Girl, Fae or a feed reader without attribution, it has been STOLEN! Who knew that my stuff was that good? ~ Fae

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That Girl, Fae by R Simpson-Large aka Fae Teardrop is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 New Zealand License.

SMBC: Guided Evolution

This realization really should put a stop to all of those people who think humans are naturally monogamous:

Why else would human males have a mushroom-shaped penis head? Hmm??

h/t Saturday Morning Breakfast Cereal

An Animal Comparison

The courier man delivered an exciting package from Mighty Ape yesterday 🙂

The first book is Biological Exuberance: Animal Homosexuality and Natural Diversity by Bruce Bagemihi, PhD.

I first became aware of this book during my Gender Studies paper at the beginning of last year. I wanted it back then, but time went by and I forgot all about it. My Sociology paper this semester reminded me about it, and I wasn’t going to let myself forget this time!!

It’s full of great tid bits of information, like how male giraffes prefer the company of other male giraffes, and how male ostriches will put on a much more elaborate mating dance for other male ostriches compared to those they put on for female ostriches.

There’s also an examination of the different types of family groups and coupling that goes on within the animal kingdom. Coupling doesn’t always mean the grouping of two in this instance, there are occurrences of pairs, triads, quads and more throughout the kingdom. There are also many instances of homosexuality, bisexuality, transsexuality, transgender, omnisexuality, non-monosexuality etc.

This is the quote that first piqued my interest:

The scientist gasps and drops the binoculars. A notebook falls from astonished hands. Graduate students mutter in alarm. Nobody wants to be the one to tell the granting agency what they’re seeing.

A female ape wraps her legs around another female, “rubbing her own clitoris against her partner’s while emitting screams of enjoyment.” The researcher explains: It’s a form of greeting behavior. Or reconciliation. Possibly food-exchange behavior. It’s certainly not sex. Not lesbian sex. Not hot lesbian sex.

Six bighorn rams cluster, rubbing, nuzzling and mounting each other. “Aggressosexual behavior,” the biologist explains. A way of establishing dominance.

A zoo penguin approaches another, bowing winsomely. The birds look identical and a zoogoer asks how to tell males and females apart. “We can tell by their behavior,” a researcher explains. “Eric is courting Dora.” A keeper arrives with news: Eric has laid an egg.

Susan McCarthy


The second part of the exciting delivery was my very own copy of Animal Farm by George Orwell. After Terry Goodkind’s Sword of Truth series, this is my favourite book.

It’s a fantastic satirical look at Communist Russia, with Stalin and Trotsky being characterized as Napoleon and Snowball the pigs. They lead a revolution against the drunken Mr Jones of Manor Farm. The civilians of Russia are shown as the other farm animals.

If you haven’t read this yet, I strongly advise that you do. You won’t regret it.

Remember:

All animals are equal but some animals are more equal than others.