Baby penguin christened Kolisi by uShaka Sea World

Durban’s aquarium and activity centre has welcomed a newly hatched baby penguin that has affectionately been named after the Springboks’ captain.

When the South African Association for Marine Biological Research’s (SAAMBR) animal care staff entered uShaka Sea World’s penguin colony on November 3, they were delighted to hear the chirping of a baby penguin.

The baby has been lovingly named Kolisi by uShaka Sea World’s staff, in celebration of the Boks’ Rugby World Cup win.

According to a statement released by SAAMBR, Kolisi’s parents, Larnie and Button, have their own unique stories that add to this one’s beauty.

Larnie, affectionately known as the ‘toy boy’, had his fair share of relationships before becoming a father for the first time on November 3. Larnie was born at uShaka Sea World on September 1, 2010.

Button, on the other hand, has a tale of resilience.

Rescued after washing up on the coast on May 1, 2015, she arrived at Ushaka Sea World with a badly damaged left wing that needed amputation. At eight years old, Button has become a first-time mom, proving that love and care can triumph over challenges. Described as ‘sweet as a button’, her maternal instincts shone through as her newborn cuddled up to her.

“I was absolutely delighted when I found a precious little ball of fluff weighing only 71g cuddled up underneath mom, while dad stood proudly and protectively on guard,” says Kelly de Klerk, the lead animal care specialist at uShaka Sea World.

Overwhelmingly happy, tears welled up in her eyes as she named the newborn penguin Kolisi.

De Klerk says it’s fitting to name the baby penguin after such an inspiring and selfless figure, emphasising the power of togetherness.

The African Penguin chick was born on November 3. Photo: SAAMBR.

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