You’re likely already pretty grateful for your awesome dad. But just in case you need some inspiration to show your love this Father’s Day, we’ve rounded up some shameful pops from the animal kingdom.
Talk about a deadbeat dad. Not only do lazy lion dads skip the parenting role, they also lack compassion toward other parents. Did you know that when a male lion becomes head of his pride, he will often kill off the cubs of the previous leader? Harsh! But at least they’re bringing home the bacon, right? Hardly. Female lions do most of the hunting (in addition to the parenting) while their male counterparts protect their territory. Despite this fact, once dinner is served, papa lion eats first, leaving scraps for his partner and kiddos. Not much food to be had? A male lion has no problem letting his family starve first.
2. Polar Bears
Female polar bears provide all the parental care of their offspring with no help from dad. On top of that, mothers have to protect their young from adult males who have been known to prey on cubs of the same species. So much for all those cute Coca-Cola ads depicting happy Polar families.
Who in the animal kingdom has been known to eat their young? Bass fish, for one. While bass aren’t the only crap fathers living in the water (there’s no shortage there), they do have a creepy Hunger Games style way of raising them. After having a herd of children and protecting them through their first days, daddy bass guides the strong ones out into the ocean to roam free while he gobbles up the weakest links.
4. Sand Goby
Bass are not alone in their child gobbling ways. The sand goby feasts on his young as well, even if he already has plenty of other food options (at least the bass have some sort of reason!). So how does the goby decide which young to eat? It’s not a case of the strong surviving, as with the bass. He eats the largest eggs, which take the longest to hatch. There’s no time to waste – he’s gotta get back out into that ocean and make more babies… and then eat.
5. Assassin Bug
What, you were expecting a cute and cuddly love bug? Though the assassin bug protects his eggs until they hatch, part of their routine is eating all of the eggs on the outside edges of their brood. They do so because those are the kids most likely to become victims of the parasitic wasps. Still, it’s really not the best case scenario, is it? We will give the killer bugs one thing – they’re willing to adopt broods from other fathers if need be. And apparently any adopted bugs are safe from filial cannibalism. It’s something!
Of course, many of these fathers have evolutionary reasons for their seemingly cruel actions, and we can’t really blame them. Still, it’s interesting to examine fatherhood outside of the human race — and be reminded to feel thankful!
This list of bad dads got you down? No worries, there are plenty of amazing animal dads out there too. Our favorite? The water bug! Check out this roundup of the ten best dads in the animal kingdom. Then, in the comments below, share your Father’s Day plans for this year!