CHICAGO (WFLA/NCB) – A baby penguin has waddles its way to a new milestone at the Shedd Aquarium in Chicago.
The aquarium’s newest magellanic penguin chick has left the nest at 3-months-old and got a chance to test its underwater wings for the first time.
The chick hatched on May 12 and has spent the last few months behind-the-scenes learning from its mom and dad an interacting with animal care staff and other adult penguins.
Nearly the size of its parents now, the chick made its public debut in the “polar play zone” to the delight of visitors who can identify it from other penguins by its lighter-colored feathers.
It recently shed its baby fluffy feathers, replacing them with the waterproof, adult feathers that allowed the young bird to learn how to swim and dive underwater for the first time.
It will be a year before the chick has its full adult plumage.
The sex of the chick will be determined by a blood test and will be announced, along with its name, in the near future.