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Same-sex penguins rear egg at Sydney zoo

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By Sallyann Nicholls
Sphengic   -   Copyright  Sea Life Sydney Aquarium

A same-sex penguin couple who are the stars of the Sea Life Sydney Aquarium is rearing an egg.

Gentoo penguins Sphen and Magic fostered the egg from another couple.

The pair got together before breeding season and were given a dummy egg to practice on while other penguin couples rearing their own eggs.

But “Sphengic” took such great care of the mock egg that staff gave them a real one to hatch.

“Sphen and Magic began developing a strong bond and became inseparable before breeding season, and are constantly seen waddling around and going for swims together in the Penguin Expedition,” the aquarium said in a statement.

“As breeding season fast approached, the couple started collecting ‘pebbles’ to create a nest in their spot, and now have more pebbles than any other couple!"

Gentoo penguins at the exhibit warm their eggs on pebble nesting rings. As one incubates the egg, the other guards the nest to protect it from “thieves or over-inquisitive neighbours”.

“[Sphengic] make a great team, and there are often days where the egg cannot be seen (which is really good for penguin breeding!),” the aquarium said.