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Dublin: 5 °C Tuesday 10 December, 2019
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Penguins living together at Israeli Zoo discovered to be 'lesbians'

Staff had assumed Suki and Chupchikoni were a male and female pair.

The penguin enclosure at Ramat Gan Safari Park.
The penguin enclosure at Ramat Gan Safari Park.
Image: tomkidron

ZOOKEEPERS AT RAMAT Gan Safari Park near Tel Aviv in Israel thought that penguins Suki and Chupchukoni were a male and female pair, who had decided to spend their lives together.

After all, that’s what penguins do, they mate for a long, long time

According to Haaretz vets at the park conducted blood tests on the penguins for an unrelated study. The results revealed that they were in fact both female.

Suki and Chupchukoni had been collecting nesting material together and because one of the penguins was significantly larger than the other staff assumed that it was a male.

It’s not possible to tell the sex of a penguin by conducting an external examination, according to safari spokesperson Sagit Horowitz.

Meanwhile a spokesperson for the avian department at the park told Haaretz that there were male suitors available in the enclosure, and that they’re certain the two females made the decision to live together.

Last year a male penguin called Buddy, who had developed a close relationship with another male at Toronto Zoo, mated with a female after being separated from his pal.

Read: ‘Gay penguins’ separated at Toronto Zoo>

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Emer McLysaght

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