A couple of male penguins might finally achieve their goal to become parents after caretakers give them an abandoned egg to hatch.
Skipper and Ping, king penguins residing at the Berlin Zoo, have reportedly long been desiring to have an offspring of their own. Speaking to the Berliner Zeitung, the zoo’s spokesman Maximillian Jäger says the two have been trying to hatch “fish and stones” in the past.
The penguin couple was handed the egg back in July after the Berlin Zoo’s only female king penguin appeared to have abandoned it showing no interest in caring for her eggs.
Skipper and Ping, both 10 years old, welcomed the eggs with open arms. According to Jäger they have both been “behaving like model parents, taking turns to keep the egg warm”. And neither of them had to guess what to do when zookeeper Norbert Zahmel handed them the egg. Their fatherly instincts reportedly kicked in instantly.
Zahmel tells the publication, “We just had to put it in front of one of the males. He immediately knew what to do.”
The effort is marked as the zoo’s first time trying to incubate an egg between a same-sex couple. If all goes as planned, another record will be marked as the first penguin chick will be born at the zoo in 17 years since 2002. But zookeepers are trying to keep their hopes grounded as there is no telling if the egg is fertilized until it actually hatches in early September. Wish the cute penguin couple good luck!