A gay penguin couple kidnapped a baby from its parents at a zoo in Denmark.
Odense Zoo saw some penguin-related drama unfold earlier this week when the two males spotted the ‘neglected’ chick, whose parents had left it to go for a swim.
The pair were reportedly desperate for their own child, so took their opportunity and kidnapped the baby penguin in the hopes of claiming it as their own.
Sandie Hedegård Munck spoke to Danish broadcaster DR about the unusual situation:
I could see that something was completely wrong. The parents disappeared and the kid was simply kidnapped. It was a pair of gay males who had snatched it and was stood with it.
The zoo employee explained she believed the father of the chick had been watching the baby while its mother went for her daily swim.
Sandie speculated, when the mum didn’t return in time for the dad’s swim, he left the little penguin to fend for itself and went for his dip.
When they saw him alone they probably thought ‘that’s too bad, we’ll snatch it’.
It sounds like a penguin-based soap opera!
The zoo shared updates of the events on their Facebook page, writing: ‘One of the kids has been kidnapped! [translated]’
Sandie added she expected the parents to immediately go looking for their child once they’d returned to land, but instead, the father seemed happy to be free of the responsibilities.
I expected the parents would return and demand the child back, but the male was strutting around like he’d never had a kid.
First abandoning the child and then not caring about getting it back? I’m not sure about this dad’s parenting skills if I’m being honest!
Sandie stated how the mother is usually very protective over the child and could even be aggressive if the zoo keepers got too close, but even she didn’t make an attempt to reclaim her child, for a while.
The zoo keepers would have let the two males keep the baby if the parents didn’t come looking for it.
The parents seemed to take their chance at some free babysitters and enjoyed their child-free day, but eventually confronted the gay couple.
The wannabe parents didn’t give up the chick without a fight, but thanks to some help from Sandie, the innocent penguin was returned to its biological family.
This story does have a happy ending for the gay couple though. After the zoo keepers witnessed them taking care of the stolen chick, they decided to give them an egg of their own, taken from a new mum who was unable to care for the little one.
The zoo continued to document the events, writing [translated]:
New in the case of the kidnapped penguin! After a day, our animal attendant Sandie had to intervene to bring the kid back to his parents.
It triggered a fight among the two penguin pairs, but as a replacement for the kid, Sandie gave the two males a penguin egg that they can have instead.
Now there is peace and idyll again in the penguin plant.
While being rewarded with a child after kidnapping someone else’s might not be the best way for the two males to learn their lesson, at least they ended up being parents to their own little chick.
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Emily Brown first began delivering important news stories aged just 13, when she launched her career with a paper round. She graduated with a BA Hons in English Language in the Media from Lancaster University, and went on to become a freelance writer and blogger. Emily contributed to The Sunday Times Travel Magazine and Student Problems before becoming a journalist at UNILAD, where she works on breaking news as well as longer form features.