We visited Fernandina Island in the Galapagos some years ago at Christmastime. Among the thousands of the iguanas, blue-footed boobies and tortoises, the animal I remember most is an abandoned sea lion pup.
Alone on the rocky lava flats, it waddled back and forth, calling for its mother. No matter how much it squeaked and bleated, there was no response. None of the other sea lions showed any interest, lounging instead in the sun. The only animal paying any attention was a hawk, sitting atop a dead tree out of the bushes. “The mother has probably been eaten by a shark,” our guide explained.
“What about the baby?” we demanded.
“The hawk will wait until it stops moving and then come down to peck its eye out.”
“That’s terrible,” we replied.
He shrugged. “That’s nature.”