The gay male penguins who adopted an egg, hoping to start a family of their own, have some sad news to share. After weeks of coddling their egg, the egg hatched but hadn’t been fertilized, meaning there will be no little bundle of joy. The penguins, and all of us, are devastated.
Skipper and Ping, who live at the Berlin Zoo (when they aren’t busy clubbing at Berghain, probably), bravely stepped up to nurture an egg abandoned by a female penguin. At the time, zoo spokesperson Maximilian Jaeger (the most German name in the history of Germanic languages) said that the penguins were “acting like exemplary parents, taking turns to warm the egg.” Unfortunately, all that hard work was for naught.
“Our same-sex king penguin couple has finished brooding his egg,” the zoo revealed on Twitter, thankfully acknowledging that these hopeful fathers are kings. “On September 2nd the egg burst open and was unfortunately not fertilised. Surely they will get the chance to become parents again in the future.”
Skipper and Ping are members of a brotherhood of gay male penguins, almost like the global culture of circuit parties but with better outfits. “Same-sex penguin couples exist in their natural habitat,” Jaeger explained in his initial statement. Gay penguins in captivity are always making headlines: a couple was split up in Toronto in 2011 in hopes that they would mate with female penguins and save their species from extinction.
And there has been a gay penguin couple who succeeded in hatching an egg: in 2009, Z and Vielpunkt welcomed a child into the world in Humboldt.
Our thoughts are with Skipper and Pink during this time of grief. But just think: It took Charlotte York years to have a baby on Sex and the City, and she got there eventually!