Mom!

While visiting Waughop lake yesterday, I noticed this brightly colored chick not far from shore

Pied-Billed Chick

though I didn’t recognize it as a Pied-Billed Grebe until I saw it next to the adult that suddenly emerged. The chick seemed to be begging from the adult.

Pied-Billed Chick With Adult

Perhaps it wanted to climb on its back, since that’s what young Grebes do when frightened.

Whatever it’s intention, it was pretty clear that the adult didn’t have the same intentions.

Pied-Billed Chick and Adult

At first it simply swam past the chick, pointedly ignoring it.

When that didn’t seem to work, it started splashing ferociously as if to say, “Get Away,”

Grebe Splashing

which didn’t seemed to deter the chick in the least.

In the end the adult rose out of the water and towered over the chick,

Pied-Billed Grebe Flapping Wings

as if to say, “Enough!”

I wish I understood Grebe, or at least knew more about their behavior and whether this is a normal part of teaching a chick to function on its own. There was another chick slightly larger than this one swimming unconcernedly by itself a mere ten yards or so away from this whole scene.

Witnessing the scene, though, it occurred to me that this poor little guy was going to need some serious therapy when it grew up.

Maybe this wasn’t a parent, though, and he’d learned not to rely on the kindness of strangers.

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What do you think?