Endangered penguins hopefully mate after match


In the immortal words of the Supremes, you can't hurry love.

But the Florida Aquarium and Lowry Park Zoo are teaming up to help two endangered penguins find it, and hopefully give their species a future.

Staff from both facilities are working together to make this union possible, but it's really up to the penguins.

The penguins - Rocky and Thumbelina - recently matched in a special species survival plan program.

Think of it like match.com for endangered animals.

The team at the Florida Aquarium will be working closely with the team at Lowry Park Zoo to see if the two get along.

They all officially met each other as aquarium staff brought rocky to his new home.

He and Thumbelina already matched but vets still needed to check him out to make sure he's healthy and a good genetic partner for her.

After his checkup, Rocky got his first look at his potential mate.

Just like with people, there's only so much a matchmaker can do. Rocky and Thumbelina have to like each other or we won't be hearing the pitter patter of little penguin feet anytime soon.


There's courtship and then if Thumbelina accepts Rocky, nature will take its course.

There's another purpose to all this, and that's awareness.

Tampa's zoo and the aquarium want more people to get to see the endangered African penguin and learn about them.

So conservation efforts to save these two in their natural habitat will help the species as a whole.

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