Two parents watching over an awkward child with weight issues that's still living with them isn't really news. Unless the child in question is a king penguin.
Nero is, well, different than the adult penguins in his life. While mom, dad and the rest of the colony are decked out in their finest black and whites, the only child is big, fluffy and brown.
Did we mention big?
"He's five months, a little over five months, and he weighs around 15 and a half kilos, which means he is the heaviest bird in our colony," said Malu Celli, a curator at the Calgary Zoo. "He's heavier than his mom, who's quite a big, chunky penguin too, and he still has some growing to do."
The size is essentially a form of insurance for young penguins.
"It's like they know they'll have to figure out how to swim and catch fish and they're not going to be very good from the start, so they'll pile up the pounds in preparation for that and they'll lose a lot of weight," said Celli, who adds Nero could lose 20 to 30 per cent of his body weight.
Nero also has the squeaky voice of a developing youngster.
"He doesn't sound at all like the adults, which are quite regal and they have a very clear trumpeting sound. He has a very whistley, like little bird sound," Celli said.


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