506 – Mothers and sons

Does maternal affection apply only to humans. The term is animal maternal behavior. It means the acts of parenting committed by females and includes teaching behavior, feeding and protection. Maternal instinct in animals can sometimes be stronger than in humans.

I am sharing with you, what is written about the Orcas. Orca mums make lifelong sacrifices for their sons. It is like a method of birth control as while raising a son, the chances of reproducing are reduced. Since they need to put in a great deal of energy to feed their sons, they neglect their own health. The mothers sacrifice their own food and their energy. Orcas remain bonded, female orcas become independent, the males depend on their mothers, even demanding a share of what the mum has caught. The sons have a higher chance of survival with their mothers around. There are granny orcas also around and the mothers and grandmothers feed the boys the tastiest pieces of food. The outcome is that the oldest boy may become the big orca and sire many offspring.

Whole life bonding

The orcas and their children stay together their entire life. Even after they have their own children, they stay together. The orca calves do not sleep the first month, so mothers go without sleep too. Throughout his life, a resident orca will only separate from his mother for a few hours at a time, to forage and mate.

It is surprising to see such a powerful and intelligent animal being dependent on their mothers all their life. Professor Darren Croft, Marine Biologist (university of Exeter) says,

Who would learn to cook, if your mum always cooked for you.

How is it that humans can be so callous about their children? Selfishness is a common characteristic observed in them. Many parents are of the view that since they took care of their children, the children should take care of them in their old age. Why do we expect reciprocation? Can we not love unconditionally?

It is only possible when we learn to have no expectations from our children and conduct ourselves in the way as we expect them to behave. Mother Orca is a beautiful example of perfect mother.

Reference: BBC

Aim Hrim Klim

If you like to learn more about the amazing Orcas, watch the videos of the german animal rights activist Robert Marc Lehmann. His videos are in German language, but you’ll find english subtitles.

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Photo by Nitesh Jain on Unsplash

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