Bette and Sidney are now sharing their home with the world.
The new parents, who just happen to be African penguins, welcomed the first of two chicks into their lives at the National Aviary. The Pittsburgh-based facility said their first egg hatched right on schedule Dec. 16. The pair’s second egg is expected to hatch anytime between Dec. 18 and 22.
And right on schedule, the second of two eggs hatched on Dec. 20.
And fans can watch the growing family in real-time thanks to a newly installed high-resolution, infrared web camera placed inside their nesting cave.
But be warned: Penguin cam is addictive in the most wonderful way.
It’s like Where’s Waldo for a tiny fuzzy ball.
“Viewers can expect to see Sidney and Bette incubating the second egg while simultaneously keeping the first chick warm,” the National Aviary announced over the weekend. “A newly hatched African Penguin chick is slightly larger than a golf ball in size, so viewers may not easily see it right away, but they may see the parents nuzzling the nest area with their beaks to reposition the chick or remaining egg.”
Then on Wednesday the aviary said:
“Viewers can now enjoy seeing Sidney and Bette keeping both chicks warm and feeding them. A newly hatched African Penguin chick is slightly larger than a golf ball in size, so viewers may not easily see them right away, but they may see two little heads peeping out, and the parents nuzzling the nest area with their beaks to reposition the chicks.”
Both parents will take turns tending the nest to help raise the chicks.
If everything happens as expected, the chicks will stay in the nest for three weeks.
After that, the chicks will be moved to the care of experts at the aviary until they are able to return to their colony and join the 20 other African Penguins.
“This special upbringing will ensure the chicks receive the highest standards of care possible and that they are prepared for their future roles as ambassadors for their species,” the aviary explains.
There are fewer than 25,000 African penguins in the wild making them an endangered species.
Baby penguin update! The first of Sidney and Bette’s eggs hatched. National Aviary specialists estimate that the chick hatched yesterday. African Penguins are endangered, making this hatching all the more important. You can check in on the cute penguin family by watching our live Penguin Nest Cam. Link in bio. • PenguinNestCam.org presented by @peoplesnatgas • #PenguinChickPGH #PenguinNestCam #NationalAviary #Pittsburgh #Penguins #SavingSpecies