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No More Mr. Nice Gay Penguin

The gay penguin couple at Polar Land in Harbin, China really wanted kids, but being gay penguins, their options were limited to well– stealing the eggs from other penguins and cleverly replacing those eggs with rocks. While an effective tactic (penguins, while smartly dressed, are not terribly bright), it angered the zookeepers, so the penguins were segregated off in their own protest pen to live sad, childless lives. That is, until visitors heard about the gay penguin discrimination going on under their beaks.

The Daily Mail writes:

“Angry visitors to Polar Land in Harbin, northern China, complained it wasn’t fair to stop the couple from becoming surrogate fathers and urged zoo bosses to give them a chance.

In response, zookeepers gave the pair two eggs laid by an inexperienced first-time mother.

‘We decided to give them two eggs from another couple whose hatching ability had been poor and they’ve turned out to be the best parents in the whole zoo,’ said one of the keepers.

‘It’s very encouraging and if this works out well we will try to arrange for them to become real parents themselves with artificial insemination.’

Wildlife experts at the park explain that despite being gay the three-year-old male birds are still driven by an urge to be fathers.

‘One of the responsibilities of being a male adult is looking after the eggs. Despite the fact that they can’t have eggs naturally, it does not take away their biological drive to be a parent,’ said one.

One campaigner who did not want to be named welcomed the move and said: ‘It wasn’t fair to stop them becoming parents and keep them apart from all the other birds just because of the way nature has made them.'”

Gay penguins are a strangely popular cause for the gay community. Most species of animals have homosexual members, but you’ve never heard of a children’s book titled And Starfish’s Regenerated Arm Makes Three, have you? Must be the tuxedos. Of course, we could just argue that anthropomorphizing animals to imagine their lives somehow relate to the structure of human society is inherently flawed and diminishes the beauty and grandeur of their own social systems and adaptations, but then where would the world be?

Without tuxedoed tap-dancing gay penguin daddies, that’s where.

On:           Dec 15, 2008
Tagged: , ,
    • Joe Moag

      Will & Grace did a thing about gay penguins like 5 years ago. What’s up with the penguins?

      Japhy: How about a penguin-cam?

      Dec 15, 2008 at 5:51 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • The Gay Numbers

      It would be interesting if there were a large enough population for someone to do a study to compare the parenting ability of the gay penguin systematically to those of the straight penguin parents. If the study showed gay penguins were symatically matter, I am sure Christian conservatives would pitch a fit.

      Dec 15, 2008 at 5:56 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Joe Moag

      What makes this pair “gay”? Do they go clubbing at night, buy scented candles for each other, read Queerty? Gay is a strictly human term to explain a larger cultrual manifestation of homosexual lives and people. I am a homosexual and I am gay.

      Are these penguins homosexual? Do they have sex with each other (that’s the definiation of homoseual, by the way) and not with females? Do they simply hang with each other without sex? Have they ever tried to have sex with females but lost out to other male rivals? That would make them bi-sexual mating losers (losers in terms of mating, not losers in some “values-loaded” meaning). That would not make them “homosexual”, in any exclusive sense of the word “homosexual”.

      The animal kingdom is full of homosexuality. This may be a homosexual pair. Just wondering if anyone knows the answers to the questions…it just seems a little flippant on the part of the zoo to call them “gay”.

      Dec 15, 2008 at 6:01 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • alex the sea turtle

      I think one of the reasons that penguin pairs get attention is that they mate for life (in most cases). Many birds mate for life.

      Dec 15, 2008 at 6:04 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Sceth

      @Joe Moag: These particular penguins have been getting coverage for quite a while.

      –Are these penguins homosexual?

      –Do they have sex with each other (that’s the definition of homosexual, by the way) and not with females?

      They have each resisted and avoided potential female mates imposed by the zookeepers.
      Note that they have demonstrated strong fidelity for each other.

      –What makes this pair “gay”?
      They are homosexual. Not everyone agrees about the definitions in contemporary English word usage.

      Dec 15, 2008 at 6:06 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Joe Moag

      @Sceth: Thanks for the info. I had never seen any coverage on them. It’s quite interesting, actually.


      Dec 15, 2008 at 6:08 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Michael

      Queerty is doing better than ever under its new stewardship. If I had any doubt in our new editor, it is gone. The level of intellect demonstrated in Queerty’s posts has risen exponentially in the last month – the fact that the word “anthropomorphizing” was used casually and humorously makes my brain smile.

      Dec 15, 2008 at 6:58 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Puddy Katz

      I tried to think of something snarky and ironic to say about gay penguins but I can’t. I guess I am becoming a softy.

      Dec 15, 2008 at 7:12 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Smokey Martini


      The fact that Queerty is reporting something I read Tuesday of last last week makes me think otherwise.

      Dec 15, 2008 at 7:14 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • The Gay Numbers

      @Joe Moag: You told multiple times about homosexuality in nature in another thread by both me and others.

      Dec 15, 2008 at 9:03 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • L

      While it can be a mistake to anthropomorphize animals, it can also be a huge mistake to set humans apart from the rest of the animal kingdom. We are animals and sometimes try very hard to overlook that fact.

      Dec 15, 2008 at 9:26 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Tim

      The same thing happened with a couple at the Central Park Zoo back in ’04

      Dec 15, 2008 at 9:28 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Jon

      While it may be true that many species of birds mate for life, penguins in fact do not. They are monogamous to one mate for a season, but they choose new mates the next season.

      Dec 15, 2008 at 10:05 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Phoenix (The Dippy Hippie One, Not the Pale One)

      @ Jon,

      These two seem stuck on each other. Maybe they’d find other mates if more gay male penguins were introduced to each other…or maybe they’re better at monogamy than the straight penguins. Which would really put a burr up the a$$es of all those fundie twits who lauded “March Of The Penguins”.

      Dec 15, 2008 at 11:21 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Nitesurf

      The penguins replacing the eggs with rocks is hysterical.

      Dec 16, 2008 at 1:05 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • teddy

      this redesign is terrible!!!

      Dec 16, 2008 at 2:51 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Jaroslaw

      I agree Teddy – I don’t like the redesign either. I have to keep scrolling left & right to see everything.

      Dec 16, 2008 at 8:37 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Joe Moag

      @The Gay Numbers: Yes, TGN, I know that. I was simply asking if anyone had some specifics about THIS pair, which Sceth did, and I thanked him. What is your point?

      Dec 16, 2008 at 9:04 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • The Gay Numbers

      @Joe Moag: Whatever. Time to move away from the crazy guy on the train. See you later.

      Dec 16, 2008 at 1:07 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Joe Moag

      @The Gay Numbers: TGN: What the fuck are you even talking about? I had said on the other post that homosexual behavior is quite common in the animal kingdom, which it is. On THIS post I was asking if there was some SPECIFIC INFORMATION about THESE 2 penguins being homosexual (I had never heard of them) as I was pointing out that the zoo was being rather flippant in referring to them as “gay”. I was interested to learn if there was actual evidence of them being homosexual, a not uncomommon event in animals, or if the zoo was just being “cleaver” and referring to 2 non-mating penguins as being “gay”, which I thought was rather flippant, as I said.

      If you would learn to read with your eyes and not your mouth, you might have picked up on this.

      Move away from yourself, old man. You are fucking NUTS!

      Dec 16, 2008 at 1:30 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • RCDC

      phoenix – apparently there was a substantial number of gay penguins in ‘March of the Penguins.’ They were among the couples who stole other penguins’ eggs. but since it can be tricky to tell male from female they just conveniently left it out of the script…

      Dec 17, 2008 at 12:06 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·

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