In their constant search for a chick, a pair of African male penguins, who went viral last year for stealing an egg from a heterosexual pair of penguins, have now stolen the nest of two female penguins.
The zoo announced developments on social media last week. Homosexuality is more common in this species of bird, explains a tweet from the zoo, adding that the two male penguins take turns guarding the nest, which contains two eggs. “After receiving an egg to hatch last year, they managed to kidnap an entire nest this year in an unguarded moment,” zoo keeper Sander Drost is quoted in a press release. The two penguins are “a dominant pair” among the 17 penguins in the zoo’s care, Drost told Dutch News.
Drost called the male penguin pair “very determined” – but their wish to become a father might still not come true as the eggs were taken from a same-sex female pair and are therefore most likely unfertilized.
Last year, after the two penguins stole the single egg, it turned out that the egg was also unfertilized. The heterosexual couple whose egg was stolen laid another egg after the robbery, the zoo said in a press release at the time: “Perhaps one day we will greet a chick hatched by a gay couple. Who knows, they might succeed next to have.” Year, “Drost said in the latest press release.
There are several reports of same-sex penguin pairs around the world seeking fatherhood or motherhood.
Last August, Electra and Violet, a pair of female gentoo penguins at the Oceanogràfic València aquarium in Spain, adopted an egg and raised the hatched chick. In October 2018, sphen and Magic, two male gentoo penguins at Sea Life Sydney Aquarium in Australia, welcomed a female chick named Sphengic. The story of Silo and Roy, two male chinstrap penguins in New York’s Central Park Zoo, who welcomed a chick named Tango in 1998, inspired an award-winning children’s book.