Everyone loves baby animals. Why? Because they look like human babies.
We are programmed to feel good inside when we see a creature with baby-like features. We want to cuddle it, protect it and take care of it.
The more a baby animal looks like a baby human, the more adorable it appears to us and the happier it make us feel.
This is why baby mammals tend to be the cutest of all animal babies. We are mammals, so baby mammals are the type of baby animals that are the most like human babies.
When we see a helpless human baby or a helpless baby animal, we instinctively want to take care of it.
Animal parents also instinctively want to protect and take care of their babies.
For example, mammals give birth and birds lay eggs in a very safe place, away from predators.
Some mammals give birth in burrows or holes.
Birds build nests in spots that are well hidden or that are hard for predators to reach.
The woodpecker hammers a hole in a tree for its nest.
The male hornbill seals up a natural hole in a tree with mud, leaving the female and their eggs safely protected inside. He feeds the female and their hatchlings through a tiny hole in the hardened mud, until the babies can fly and are ready to leave the nest. Then, the mud wall is broken down.
Some animal parents take care of their young for a long time.
Mammal mothers may nurse their babies for months.
Mammal parents may continue to protect their animal babies long after their babies are eating solid food.
Baby animals who spend a long time with their parents learn many important skills from their parents. If they are carnivores (meat eaters) they learn how to hunt by watching their parents.
One of the cutest things about baby animals is their curiosity and their desire to learn - a quality that they share with baby humans.