Rare baby penguin on display at Ripley’s Aquarium

GATLINBURG, Tenn. (NBC/WBIR) — A rare baby penguin is on display at Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies in Gatlinburg, Tenn.

The new African black-footed penguin is about 2 months old and weighs around five pounds.

Right now, he is being kept away from the main penguin exhibit, but the Aquarium hopes he’ll join the other 34 penguins in the next month or two.

This is the second baby penguin born at Ripley’s Aquarium.

African penguins are considered an endangered species.

“By breeding them here in zoos and aquariums, we can keep diversity,” said Senior Aviculturist Megan Klose. “So that way, if we have to repopulate in the wild they can be raised in a way that allows that, and they’re not all related to each other.”

Meanwhile, Ripley’s Aquarium is planning to have a contest to name the new baby penguin.

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