A penguin set free to roam around an aquarium after it was closed by coronavirus has experienced meeting beluga whales for the first time – and the result is mesmerising. Wellington is among a group of penguins being given guided tours of The Shedd Aquarium in Chicago, where they live, after it closed its doors to the public. Staff have been sharing videos of the group’s first outings on social media, with crested penguin Wellington taking centre stage. Earlier this week Wellington met whales Kayavak, Mauyak and baby Annik. It was his first ever time meeting belugas and it was clearly a moving experience.
Sharing the expedition on the zoo’s Twitter page, a spokesman wrote: ‘Wellington, meet the belugas! ‘This weekend, Wellington visited Kayavak, Mauyak and baby Annik, who were very curious about this little rockhopper. ‘Belugas are northern hemisphere animals, so they would likely never see a penguin.’ Another video shared by zoo staff showed Wellington’s friends Edward and Annie – a bonded pair of rockhopper penguins – exploring the majestic entrance area. ‘While this may be a strange time for us, these days feel normal for animals at Shedd,’ the spokesman said. ‘Our caregivers are constantly providing new experiences for the animals to explore and express their natural behaviors with.’