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Zoo resorts to plastic penguins because of shortage of real ones

October 3, 2018

Gentoo penguins stand in the exhibit at the Pittsburgh Zoo & PPG Aquarium on Thursday, July 14, 2016. The zoo's newborn Gentoo penguins still have some time until they fledge and are able to join the rest of the penguins in the exhibit.

This wasn’t how the launch of their new exhibit was supposed to go.

But the Terlford Exotic Zoo in England was left with no choice.

A nearly $80,000 penguin exhibit, set to feature a Humboldt penguins, will now temporarily feature plastic penguins after an outbreak of avian malaria rendered the Humboldt batch unable to be transported, according to the Daily Star.

Six plastic models will be placed in the water, and 35-year-old zoo owner Scott Adams said he is unsure when the real birds would be arriving, the Daily Star reported.

The exhibit isn’t suitable for any other animals, so the plastic models were the best choice, Scott said.

“We’re using the plastic models so children can still see and learn about them until penguins arrive. It’s specially made for penguins, and not really suitable for anything else, so we have no alternative.”

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