Mayor Gaylor Baird Reveals Name, Gender of Penguin Chick

LINCOLN–(News Release June 6)–Mayor Leirion Gaylor Baird today revealed the name and gender of one of Lincoln Children’s Zoo newest residents: a female Humboldt penguin chick named Percy. Born April 4 at the Lincoln Children’s Zoo, Percy is only the second penguin ever hatched at the zoo.

“We are delighted to welcome Percy, our newest resident of the quality-of-life capital of the country! I encourage Lincoln families to come meet Percy and enjoy all that our wonderful Lincoln Children’s Zoo has to offer,” Mayor Gaylor Baird said.

During a visit Lincoln Children’s Zoo on Tuesday, June 4, Mayor Gaylor Baird assisted Dr. Sarah Woodhouse, Director of Animal Health and Conservation, with a health check on Percy. She weighs 3.1 kilograms, up from 61.8 grams on her hatch date. Percy is currently going through her first molting process, shedding her baby feathers and growing her new adult, waterproof feathers. Percy’s parents, Sharkbait and John Henry, have been very attentive parents, guarding Percy, keeping her warm, and feeding her.

Guests will be able to see Percy outside at the Penguin Pool in a couple of weeks, once she has finished molting and all her waterproof feathers have grown in.

“It was an honor to have Mayor Gaylor Baird meet the second-ever penguin chick hatched at the Zoo,” said Evan Killeen, Lincoln Children’s Zoo CEO. “Percy is the first parent-raised chick to hatch at the Zoo, as well as an important part of animal conservation efforts for this vulnerable species, so it’s incredible to have the Mayor be a part of this important milestone.”

Lincoln Children’s Zoo plays an important role in animal conservation and protecting species from extinction. Humboldt penguins are listed as vulnerable on the International Union Conservation of Nature’s Red List of Threatened Species, meaning they face a high risk of extinction in the wild.

The Lincoln Children’s Zoo is part of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums’ Species Survival Plan Program. The program develops a Breeding and Transfer Plan which identifies population goals and recommendations to manage a genetically diverse, demographically varied, and biologically sound population. The plan’s coordinators approved breeding recommendations for the Zoo’s penguins Sharkbait and John Henry.