A Polish zoo had reason to celebrate recently with the birth of a rare albino African Penguin. The as yet unnamed chick is three-months-old and one of the most unique birds around.
Adorable, One Of A Kind Penguin
Albino penguins are a rare phenomenon and this one is likely the only one of its kind currently. Right now it is a bit timid but is generally strong and mixing with it’s pen-mates.
Zookeepers were delighted with the chick’s birth. Once they announced it, the world was equally thrilled and video of the penguin was posted across social media.
Genetic Abnormality Caused Lack Of Color
The unique coloring of the chick is caused by a genetic abnormality and causes it to stand out from its black and white flockmates. Unfortunately, this also means that so far, it has been impossible to determine the bird’s gender. That’s because penguin gender can usually be identified based on a penguin’s darker coloring patterns. That’s clearly not possible in this case.
When the bird is older it will undergo DNA testing that will reveal its gender. After that, zookeepers will finally be able to give it a name.
Many Chicks Don’t Survive Infancy
The penguin was actually born three months earlier than the zoo’s announcement of the birth. Why the delay? As it turns out most albino penguins are too vulnerable to survive infancy. Their coloring makes them more susceptible to disease and attracts unwanted, aggressive attention from flockmates and other predators.
With this in mind, the zoo is taking special care to give the chick every possible chance of survival. They’re currently keeping it in an enclosure with just its parents and two other friendly chicks. Ultimately, it is hoped that the penguin will be able to live a long and happy life with the larger flock. So far, all signs for the chick are positive. Hopes are high that it will grow to an adult and charm zoo visitors for years to come.
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