As humans, we would never put our young in harm’s way. Out in the animal kingdom, that “idea” is a little bit looser for the animals that find themselves in life-and-death situations on a daily basis.
We’ve all heard of how a baby bird first gets going in life, right? Eggs are laid by the mother, then protected and kept warm until they are ready to hatch. Once they do, the mother seeks out food to feed the young, and once she deems them fit to live life out on their own, the mother usually pushes their offspring out of the nest.
That’s why we humans have the “empty nester” saying for parents that raise their children and get them out of the house. Adults can teach their kids a lot about making it out in the real world, but the biggest learning lesson comes when parents give that “push” to get their children out of the nest.
There’s nothing wrong with a mother bird pushing their baby out of the nest when they’re ready, but unfortunately, that’s not the only occasion that calls for mothers to throw their offspring overboard. The other reason isn’t all that pretty, and plays out in the video below.
In the footage, a mother stork makes the incredibly difficult decision of sacrificing one of her young to ensure that the other two baby storks will make it. She picks up the smallest of the three and pushes it over to the edge of the nest, where she nudges it off before it is ready for life out on its own. It’s a terribly brutal part of a nature, but a part of nature nonetheless.
It’s survival of the fittest at its finest, or depending on how you look at it, at its worst. You can view the callous video below: