Welcome to the world, little one! In Chattanooga, Tennessee, we're celebrating the Tennessee Aquarium's newest penguin chick. The penguin was born in early June to two of the Aquarium's experienced penguin parents, Bug and Big T. Although the chick doesn't have an official name yet, two unusally large feet have earned it the cute nickname of "Big Foot."
"Besides his belly, the feet are the biggest thing on this guy right now! Penguin chicks have almost comically large feet until they grow into them," says Senior Aviculturist Loribeth Lee. "Having big feet helps penguins to balance while they are so oddly shaped."
The penguin chick will be given an official name during a contest on the Aquarium's Facebook page later this year. The baby is being taken care of closely by the Aquarium's penguin experts, as the first four weeks of a chick's life can prove to be the most difficult. "There are lots of obstacles to overcome," Loribeth says. "We will continue to keep a close eye on this little bird, especially making sure the nest stays clean and the chick continues to get fed by both parents." With its healthy appetite, it shouldn't be too long before "Big Foot" catches up with its feet. (If not, we're thrilled to host a Southern version of Happy Feet!)