the barn in fall

the barn in fall

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Parenting by Luck and Darwin

I'm a mom.  I know that sometimes you can't turn your back on kids, not if you want them to survive.  There are just too many bad things that can happen.  That's what I think about every time I see something like this:

These twin fawns showed up on the front lawn at dusk (hence the poor quality photo).  They're pretty young for this late in the year - still covered with white spots.  I never saw their mother.  Did she say, "Go hang out under the crab tree until I get back?"  Or did they sneak off while she wasn't looking?  Are they two of those suspicious kids with a can of spray paint behind their backs, or are they the responsible kind who wave goodbye to mom, lock the door, and settle back with a good algebra book?  Is it just luck that fifteen minutes later they wandered off into the trees without having been spotted by a coyote?

The same with that mother turkey I accidentally scared out of a tree in my back yard.  She left five or six baby turkeys scrambling around and finally flying off in different directions until the family was spread out over several acres.  Do they have an unerring way of finding each other again?  Or is it natural selection, culling out the ones who are too stupid to live?  I like to think it's the former.  But nature can be heartless, and bad things happen.  Keep an eye on those kids, damn it!

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