Two female penguins from the colony of the Antarctic area of the Oceanogràfic de València, Electra and Viola, have adopted the egg of another couple, they have hatched it and have managed to raise a chicken.
It is the first time that it occurs a birth in these circumstances at the Oceanogràfic, where this breeding season three chicks have been born in the colony of 25 Gentoo penguins (Pygoscelis papua), also known as Juanito.
The three couples that have raised chickens so far have been Navi and Aquela, Bolo and Melibea and a third made up of Electra and Viola and, although they are not many compared to other times, an unusual event has occurred, as reported by the Oceanogràfic in a statement.
Electra and Viola form an exceptional pair, although not unusual in the world of these birds, since the formation of same-sex couples is common in more than 450 species of animals and occurs both in zoos and in the wild.
The pair of the two females began, curiously, to have the attitude and habitual actions prior to reproduction, like building your own nest out of stones.
Observing this situation, the caregivers decided transfer a fertile egg from another couple and Electra and Viola successfully carried out the entire breeding process and now have their first calf.
The reproduction of penguins is at all times a thing of two: it begins with the construction of the nests that consist of a round pile of pebbles, which they lift with great care and care and which, depending on the circumstances, can reach 20 centimeters on a side.
The stones are a very precious commodity for these animals Thus, it is usually a matter of controversy, because their owners keep them at all costs and their defense can end in a dispute. In fact, pebbles can be part of courtship by the male.
Incubation is carried out by the father and mother, who take turns every day and the eggs, normally two for each laying, hatch after 38 days and the chicks usually become independent at 75 days with an approximate weight of between 6 and 7 kilos.