Protective Father Birds Hides His Chicks From Danger In Adorable Photos


The animal kingdom is full of the most peculiar beings that not every person knows about. If you’ve never heard anything of an adorable and sometimes creepy bird called African Jacana, you’re just about to learn something new! The Jacanidae family has 8 known species of Jacanas, and one of them is the African Jacana. It is a tropical bird that mostly resides in wetlands and is usually found in sub-Saharan Africa.

Commonly referred to as “Jesus birds”, these vertebrates have an ability to walk on water or at least give a good impression of this ability.

Their slender, long legs paired with large feet and toes up to 7cm (2.75 inches) allows them to walk on floating vegetation with ease.

African Jacanas rarely fly and spend most of their lives on the water which earned them a suitable nickname — lily-trotters.

These vertebrates fare well not only above water but also under it. They are very good divers and use this skill as great protection from predators.

Jacanas engage in quite an unusual mating system called polyandry. It means that females mate with multiple males, leaving the duty of taking care of the chicks to them.

While males are the protectors of the chicks, females protect the territory due to the fact that they are much bigger in size.

Image credits: Willem Kruger

Being single dads, male jacanas are experts at raising chicks. Their signature move at protecting the little ones is tucking them right under their wings with the feet sticking out.

Image credits: Willem Kruger

While it’s an adorable way to protect the vulnerable chicks, it makes their dads look like they have an unusual number of legs.

A bit creepy, isn’t it? A few lucky photographers have managed to capture this unique moment on camera.



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