Mother Nature takes a dim view of males who can’t manage fatherhood. You see it in the tarantula, whom she dooms to run around the desert until he either finds a mate or starves to death.

And while there will always be love 'em and leave 'em types in any species, many animal males — sea horses, penguins, rheas, lumpsuckers and frogs, to name a few —perform their paternal roles beyond the call of duty, but consider a couple of nature’s most stellar dads:

Male wolves are attentive, monogamous and protective fathers who mate for life. Wolves form a classic nuclear family with a mom, dad and kids, and the male guards and hunts for food to bring to his offspring, displaying none of the “me first” entitlement of lions. Although their fierce reputation is well-deserved, the wolf will bring entire pieces of fresh kill to his brood, and as they grow, he takes on the role of stern-yet-playful teacher, guiding the pups to a pack life of their own.

Then there’s the jacana, pronounced JACK-an-a, one of a group of long-legged wading birds found in the tropics worldwide. The male jacana does all the heavy lifting of parenthood — making nests, incubating the eggs and caring for the chicks — and will even stay with the nest long after his partner has left him and gone off on migration. A jacana is such a loyal father, he’ll often care for eggs fertilized by other males. Meanwhile, the female jacana roams around and mates with as many males as she can find.

Perhaps because all work and no play makes Jack a dull boy.

Happy Father’s Day.


Patricia Gannon covers society for The Advocate. She can be reached at pgannon@theadvocate.com.

Hail to the King

Just in time for Father’s Day. The men of Triton announced their 2018 Carnival king over cocktails and a steak dinner at River Oaks. King Triton XXXIX William Ritchey will misrule over Mardi Gras and received his crown from Commodore Danny Head, while outgoing Queen Kylee LeBlanc passed her throne to Lesley Maxwell. Ball Captain Vaughn Swilley met the press with aplomb, spirits were high and clearly the gentlemen have stirred things up. “Triton’s Grand Tour” is the theme, and getting off to a good start were new members Paul Boudreaux, Mark Johnson and Jason “Chief” Dulany, smocked in Mardi Gras colors; father-son duo Kevin Broussard and Ronnie Broussard; past monarchs Dr. Max Lamarche, Jim Camel and Wayne Prejean; Mardi Gras men Kenny Suire and Sabino Chavez; and, most of all, bridegroom Gerald LeBlanc, due to be married the very next day.

Jive Talkin’

The Grand 14 and 99.9 KTDY joined forces for a special private screening of "Saturday Night Fever." The disco redux drew generations of fans, plus some who remember more dance moves than they let on. Moss Motors served the pre-film Champagne, Townsquare DJs Steve Wiley, Debbie Ray and CJ Clements gave guests the red carpet treatment, and stayin’ alive were theater manager Dempsey Thibodeaux, Sharon Moss, Angela Cole and her mother, Lourdes Garcia, up from Miami. What we loved: Simply the best Leslie Burnum, who nailed it as John Travolta. And that’s not jive talkin’.

Grand Finale Gala

The Leukemia and Lymphoma Society concluded their Man and Woman of the Year campaign with a plush Le Pavillion evening auction and banquet. Volunteers vied for the title by hustling for donations, and walking away with the honors were Kevin Melançon at $81,000 and Tracy Aucoin at $66,000. The cocktail crowd enjoyed an extensive silent auction prior to announcements and sit-down dinner, including Girl of the Year Kennedy Koenig and her mom, Jennifer Koenig; campaign manager Edie Couvillon; American Legion Post Commander Daniel Bentley and wife Shelley, also a contender; and UL-Lafayette contingent Dan Hare, Tommy and Karren Hays, and Barbara and Ray Authement, who initiated the program in Lafayette to honor their daughter. A total of $277,000 was raised.