Sweet Pea and Paula celebrate their new egg at the Tennessee Aquarium
Sweet Pea (the female Macaroni Penguin) laying an egg while her mate, Paulie calls loudly. Tennessee Aquarium photo
Being a parent has its joyous moments, and two of the Macaroni Penguins at the Tennessee Aquarium showed how those in the animal kingdom celebrate the arrival of a new egg.
Senior aviculturist Loribeth Lee and animal trainer Holly Lutz were in the right place at the right time while the two Macaroni Penguins were roosting in their rocky nest.
Lutz' video inside the Penguins’ Rock exhibit, shows Sweet Pea (the female Macaroni Penguin) laying an egg while her mate, Paulie, appears to celebrate with a loud call seconds after the egg appears.
“Macaronis often swing their heads from side to side and let out very loud calls as a sign of courtship during nesting season,”said Lee. “But it was extra sweet to catch Paulie vocalizing right after Sweet Pea laid her egg.”
Aquarium experts placed the nesting rocks in the exhibit on April 1 this year. Since then, the Gentoo and Macaroni penguins have been busily building nests. The Macaroni Penguins are typically the first to start laying eggs while the Gentoos usually start laying eggs a few weeks later. Aquarium guests can observe the courtship, nesting and egg-tending behaviors for the rest of the season which will last through the summer months.