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Science + Tech

October 12, 2020 - Newsweek

50 Images of Parenthood in the Animal Kingdom

50 Images of Parenthood in the Animal Kingdom
Orangutan adult and child© Photabulous!

The offspring of megapodes (chicken-like birds) are unlikely to ever meet their parents. After western fence lizards lay their eggs, they simply cover them up and move on with their life—frankly, experts aren't even sure if these reptiles are aware they've laid an egg. And the Labord's chameleon lays their eggs leading up to winter, but dies before those eggs even hatch.

While there are some species in the animal kingdom who don't have much to do with their kids after reproduction, that's not the norm; some species stick around the nest for years.

For the first couple years of life, orangutans rely on their mom for just about everything and while they are likely to leave home after about six or seven years, the females may visit their mother until about age 15. Female African elephants usually stick with their herd throughout the entirety of their lives while males tend to spend roughly a third of their life with their herd. And orca females stick with their pod from birth to death, with males leaving to mate but ultimately returning.

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