Wednesday, 25 January 2012

jacuzzi hogs

Imagine David Attenborough's hushed voice:

We are here in the depths of Planet Spa, near a hot spring where adults come to bathe.  Already in the water is a large bull male, maintaining his territory by posture  If you notice his arms are spread out across all the available space, effectively holding six feet of warm therapeutic water for himself.

Now, this is interesting, a young male is entering the pool.  Will we see aggressive displays?  No, see how the younger one slips into the water placing himself to one side, avoiding eye contact with the larger male.  Yet in an act of gentle defiance he mirrors the posture of the other.  These two could lie here for hours without trouble; the bull confident of his supremacy, the younger male secure in his place.

A female arrives.  She weighs up the situation then tiptoes into the water and places herself in the uncomfortable shallow area, shifting her postion in the hope of more room.  The two males remain with heads back, eyes closed and legs spread forward taking up the floor space.

Yes, she's given up. The female is walking out of the pool and away to another area. From her shape we can see she is a mature alpha. Why, I wonder, didn't she challenge the males? Maybe she felt they were unsuitable breeding stock.

Close up of David Attenborough smiling:
Well. That's all we have time for today. I'll see you soon for another episode of Life on planet Spa.

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