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Montevideo, September 25th 2018 - 11:21 UTC

Penguins' story banned from Missouri children's library

Sunday, March 5th 2006 - 21:00 UTC
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A children's book about two male penguins that raise a baby penguin has been moved to the nonfiction section of two public library branches in Missouri, United States after parents complained it had homosexual undertones, reports the US press.

The illustrated book, "And Tango Makes Three," is based on a true story of two male penguins, named Roy and Silo, who adopted an abandoned egg at New York City's Central Park Zoo in the late 1990s.

The book, written by Peter Parnell and Justin Richardson, was moved from the children's section at two Rolling Hills' Consolidated Library's branches in Savannah and St. Joseph in northwest Missouri. Two parents had expressed concerns about the book last month.

In the book Silo and Roy set up housekeeping together and for six years were completely devoted to each other and inseparable.

Their chief keeper, Rob Gramzay discovered that the couple put a rock simulating an egg in their nest and sat on it, keeping it warm in the folds of their abdomens.

Gramzay finally gave them a fertile egg that needed care to hatch. Things went perfectly. Roy and Silo sat on it for the typical 34 days until a chick, Tango, was born. For the next two and a half months they raised Tango, keeping her warm and feeding her food from their beaks until she could go out into the world on her own.

Zoologists say that it is an over simplification to call the penguins gay, but exactly what bound the two, and other examples of same-sex relationships among animals remains a mystery.

Early last year, after "And Tango Makes Three" was written the penguin couple broke up. For a brief period Roy lived with a female penguin.

Barbara Read, the Rolling Hills' director, said experts report that adoptions aren't unusual in the penguin world. However, moving the book to the nonfiction section would decrease the chance that it would "blindside" readers, she said.

Categories: Mercosur.

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