There’s good news for Buddy and Pedro, the two ‘gay’ penguins at the Toronto Zoo; they will be reunited.
The two male African Penguins, which had “pair bonded”, were recently in the news when zookeepers announced that they would be separated in a bid to get them to mate with females.
African Penguins – also know in South Africa as Jackass Penguins – are endangered, with around 55 000 remaining in the world. The species could be extinct within 15 years.
Buddy and Pedro have, according to the zoo, displayed behaviours usually found in couples consisting of male and female. These include pairing off at night, making a braying mating call and even defending their territory together.
“It’s a complicated issue, but they seem to be in a loving relationship of some sort,” Joe Torzsok, chair of the Toronto zoo board, told The Star.
After an outcry about the couple’s separation, it has now been announced that their split will be temporary and that they will be allowed to reunite after the mating season.
According to PinkNews.co.uk, the zoo’s bird curator, Tom Mason, said that if the couple wished to get back together at the end of the mating period, “they will be welcome to do so”.
Same-sex boding between penguins is a relatively common phenomenon and there have been a number of high profile cases over the years, including penguins at the East London Aquarium, and in Germany and China.