A same-sex penguin pair have become parents after adopting another couple’s egg and hatching it.
Keepers at the Oceanogràfic aquarium in Valencia, Spain, noticed that Electra and Viola were getting broody and gave them an egg from a heterosexual pair. The female penguins then became the first same-sex couple to take care of an egg and successfully hatch it, reports say.
But they are not parenting alone in their gentoo penguin community, since two other couples, opposite sex pairs Navi and Aquele and Bolo and Melibea, have also raised chicks this season.
The aquarium said Electra and Viola are an ‘exceptional pair’ that ‘have been able to adopt, hatch and raise an egg from another couple, something that’s happened for the first time at the Oceanogràfic.’
It added that the pair engaged in mating rituals, including making a nest out of pebbles, before being given the egg, the Gay Star reported in August.
While this may be a first for Oceanogràfic, same-sex couples are very common among penguins all over the world, with the trend also occurring in dolphins, beetles, sheep and more.
London Zoo has three same-sex Humboldt penguin couples, two male and one female, out of 95 in total, and they even joined London’s Pride parade last year.
Dingle Oceanworld Aquarium in Kerry, Ireland has eight same-sex penguin couples out of their 15 and zoos in Auckland, Berlin, Tel Aviv, Odense, New York and Milan have also reported same-sex couples.
Last year Ferrari and Pringle, two humbolt penguins in Chipping Norton even got married.
Scientists claim that homosexuality exists in almost every species, with about 60% of sex in bonobo chipanzees forming same-sex relationships.
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