I posted this on my website on July 21, 2009:
This story tells us a great deal about the needs of mammals, including humans. Thankfully, the joey was rescued and that the zoo keeper is taking painstaking efforts to replicate the joey's basic attachment needs. The fact that the mother rejected the baby in captivity is testimony to how stressful unnatural environments are to animals, including humans, and how those environments drive parents of all species to act in ways that are not in their offspring's best interests. Scientisists spend a great deal of time studying and replicating animal nurturing, baby-wearing, nursing and other needs, without realizing that babies of our own species also need to be worn and held on the skin constantly for nine months, nursed for up to 4 and 1/2 years and raised in nurturing enviornments where children can learn in their own way. Scientists know that haphazard, random or mediocre caregiving doesn't work to raise baby animals. My hope is that our science fields realize the same about children of our own species.