Monday, March 01, 2010

Tigers and Bulls

A couple of weeks ago I read an interesting article in the paper--seems that a Chinese zoo had a white tiger that had gotten fat and lazy because he hadn't had to hunt for his food. (The zoo keepers usually feed him ground beef).

So they released a live bull into the tiger enclosure, assuming that the tiger would stalk, kill, and eat the bull.

Boy, were they surprised when the bull charged the tiger, which fled for its life . . . but the bull caught the tiger and bit it.

So they had to pull the bull out . . . . and the next time they get a hankering to insert live prey, they're going to use chickens.

I see this true story as one big metaphor--if you've got skills you're not using (physical, mental, or spiritual), you're not going to be able to handle the big challenge when it comes. :-/



Mocha with Linda said...

Poor tiger! You would think they would have started him out a little more gradually!

Heading out to fact my own chickens....

Mocha with Linda said...

Um, that would be FACE my own chickens. Obviously, the keyboard is the first one to conquer!!

Anonymous said...

I like your metaphor. Two things came to my mind: 1) Don't play with your food; and 2) This gives a whole new dimension to eating disorders! More proof positive as to why YOU are the Writer and I am the Reader! Clyde

Kay Day said...

Maybe they picked the wrong bull. What kind of bull attacks a tiger?

But I do love the story and the analogy! I guess it applies to both animals. The one had neglected his killing skills and the other his cowering skills.

Anonymous said...

Our local wildlife sanctuary can't feed the panthers live food because they would just play with the intended dinner! Having always lived in captivity, the panthers have zero survival skills.
Makes me think of the balance of parenting - preparing our children for life vs. over-protecting them.
Great food for thought, thanks!

Nike Chillemi said...

What horrid zoo management!

But yes, an animal in captivity is not going to act like the same animal would in the wild.

I agree w/Jennifer, our jobs as parents is to prepare our children for life in the "wild real world."