A pair of gay flamingos at Edinburgh zoo have adopted a baby chick, after it was rejected by its straight parents.
The rare Chilean Flamingo was born to a straight couple as part of the zoo’s breeding programme, but was left helpless after it fell out of its nest before even hatching.
According to the Mirror, zookeeper Nick Dowling said: “We weren’t short of drama in the flamingo flock this year.
“When the first egg arrived the parenting couple got really excited and accidentally knocked it off the nest – their natural instinct was then to abandon the egg.
“We don’t usually intervene with our flamingo flock but as this was our first egg since 2010, we carefully picked it up and placed it back on the nest.
“Luckily, one of our same-sex male couples went straight onto the nest, fostered the egg and raised it as their own.”
Head of birds Colin Oulton added: “This year has been good for us so far.
“We’ve had five chicks and it’s the first time we’ve bred since 2010. We are obviously delighted.
“We’ve been able to utilise these male male bonds and it’s working out fairly well. Male male pairs are equally able to rear youngsters.”
Same-sex animal pairings raising neglected babies is common both in zoos and in the wild.
Earlier this year, a Kent zoo said that a pair of gay penguins who are raising a baby together are doing a much better job than their straight counterparts.
In 2005 children’s book ‘And Tango Makes Three’ was released about Roy and Silo, a famous pair of male penguins in New York Zoo who raised an egg together.