Fun

‘World’s most famous gay penguin couple’ need your help naming their adorable new baby chick

Nick Duffy January 20, 2021
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Sphen and Magic, two male gentoo penguins at the Sea Life Aquarium in Sydney

Sphen and Magic, two male gentoo penguins at the Sea Life Aquarium in Sydney

A competition has been launched to name the second chick hatched by famous gay penguin couple Sphen and Magic.

Sphen and Magic, two male gentoo penguins at the Sea Life Aquarium in Sydney, found fame in October 2018 when they hatched their first chick, after zookeepers noticed them attempting to hatch a rock and gave them a spare egg to look after.

After successfully parenting first chick Lara, the inseparable couple are now the aquarium’s go-to adoptive dads for eggs neglected by straight penguins, and recently hatched a second chick.

The zoo has launched a competition to name the newly-hatched penguin, who is only a few months old but is already gaining in size.

Public urged to help name chick born to gay penguin couple.

Penguin supervisor Kerrie Dixon said: “The baby chicks are just as big as their parents now and they need names.

“We thought the best way to celebrate Penguin Awareness Day (on 20 January) and raise awareness for the role our adorable colony plays in driving awareness for their wild counterparts and the threats to their survival, is to give Sphen and Magic fans around the world the chance to name their second chick.”

Sydney Sea Life Aquarium added: “Our colony of seven gentoo penguin chicks are all grown up, there’s just one problem… the birth certificate of Sphen and Magic’s baby is missing a name and we need your help!

“We are putting out a call out for the public to help name the chick of the world’s most famous gay penguin couple and win the chance to meet the waddling family on the ice in our sub-antarctic zone!”

gay penguin chick
Sphen, Magic and their first chick. (Sea Life Sydney/ Instagram)

The aquarium added that the competition is “open to anyone and everyone around the world” because “borders do not apply when it comes to Sphen and Magic”, with any winners outside of New South Wales “dialled in for a special private Zoom call with the famous family”.

Same-sex pairings are common in animals, but homophobia is a human problem.

Gay pairings are remarkably common in the penguin world, with the animals seeking long-lasting relationships with mates regardless of sex.

In 2019, lesbian penguin parents hatched a chick at London Sea Life Aquarium.

Children’s book And Tango Makes Three, based on the real-life story of male chinstrap penguin parents at New York’s Central Park Zoo, was recently revealed to be one of the most-banned books of the decade.

While homosexuality is common in many animal species, homophobia – a noted problem among humans – is yet to be witnessed in the animal kingdom.

Related topics: penguins, sphen and magic

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