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Gay penguin dads finally get their own egg after trying to hatch a fish

Lily Wakefield August 12, 2019
penguins

Same-sex penguin parents exist in the wild as well as in captivity. (VCG/VCG via Getty Images)

Two gay emperor penguins at Berlin Zoo wanted a baby so badly that they tried to hatch dead fish and rocks, but now they finally have an egg of their own.

When an egg was abandoned by a female Emperor penguin, zoo staff gave it to Skipper and Ping, who are both 10 years old.

They take turns keeping it warm, putting on their feet and then covering it with their bellies.

According to Berliner Zeitung, zoo spokesman Maximilian Jaeger said: “The two male penguins are acting like exemplary parents, taking turns to warm the egg. They kept trying to hatch fish and stones.”

He said that zoo staff cannot be sure the egg is fertilised, but if it is a chick should emerge in around 55 days.

penguins
If the egg is fertilised, a chick should emerge in around 55 days. (Auscape/Universal Images Group via Getty Images)

There are many other gay penguin parents around the world, both in captivity and in the wild

“Same-sex penguin couples exist in their natural habitat as well,” Jaeger added.

Although Skipper and Ping would be the first same-sex penguin couple to raise a chick in Berlin Zoo, there have been many other gay penguin parents and couples around the world.

Last month, a lesbian penguin couple at the Sea Life London aquarium became parents to a little chick during Pride month.

Also for Pride month, London Zoo’s penguin beach had a banner installed that said “some penguins are gay, get over it” to celebrate the three same-sex penguin couples that live there.

At San Francisco Zoo, a pair of male Magellanic penguins have been fostering the chicks most important to the breeding program because staff say they are “fantastic parents.”

The animal kingdom is sexually diverse, and same-sex coupling has been recorded in over 1,500 different species.

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