After some time, more and more skuas began to circle the carcass, hoping for their chance at a meal.
It was at this point that Rich and I realized the most horrifying part of what was happening. The mother, though obviously dead, still had a pup lying next to her, who was alive, and oblivious to what was happening all around it. The pup was in fact still attempting to suckle the mother, while the skuas were having their way with her.
Skuas moving on to other opportunities:
Skuas bathing post feast:
Freshly bathed skua in search of more food:Although this was a grizzly reminder of how tough nature can be, it is a fact of life, and one we are confronted with more than one would like in this environment.