Dear mummy Nature

I saw a horrible thing on tv last night, in a PBS show about the Kalahari. There are flamingos that nest in in an area of the Kalahari which slowly dries out during the nesting season, with the result that the chicks have to walk a hundred miles through the desert to get to water. They have to walk. A hundred miles. Through a desert. It’s as ridiculous as it sounds. They’re small, they’re feeble, it’s burning hot. It takes weeks.

250,000 leave; some years not one chick makes it.

Good planning! Wouldn’t you think the adults would manage to think ‘gee, maybe we should find a better place to nest’? Or that, failing to think that, they would all quickly die off because they couldn’t keep the numbers up? But apparently that’s not happening. So instead you get this disgusting trek of misery. One revolting detail is that the chicks’ wing tips pick up mud as they trudge along, and the mud hardens and just hangs there, so they’re all staggering along with these heavy blobs dragging them down. It’s a truly sickening sight – one wants to arrest all the parents for abuse.

Another tale for the Devil’s Chaplain.

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