The two male emperor penguins had adopted an egg in their quest to have a little one of their own.
But Berlin Zoo said Thursday that the egg “burst open” on September 2nd and it had not been fertilized.
Our same-sex #kingpenguin couple has finished brooding his egg. On September 2nd the egg burst open and was unfortunately not fertilized. Surely they will get the chance to become parents again in the future. #ZooBerlin pic.twitter.com/vajn3s8DmZ
— Zoo Tierpark Berlin (@zooberlin) September 5, 2019
Staff at Berlin Zoo had given the amorous couple an egg, which they swiftly began to incubate in August, as The Local reported.
The egg came from another pair who in recent years “have not got along 100 percent and who have therefore often damaged their eggs”, said zookeepers Norbert Zahmel.
Skipper and Ping, both 10-years-old, were an “excellent” choice to become adoptive parents, he had added.
They had even tried in the past to hatch a stone in their bid to become parents.
But staff are hopeful they will get a chick of their own. A spokesman told The Local: “Even though Skipper and Ping did not have any luck with this year's breed, they will surely get the opportunity to become parents again in the future.”
The pair moved to Berlin from Hamburg's Hagenbeck Zoo in April, and have been inseparable ever since.
Gay penguins of either sex are not unusual, and can be found in the wild and in captivity.
The news came after the zoo welcomed panda twins. Meng Meng gave birth to two gorgeous cubs on Saturday.
“Meng Meng and her two offspring coped well with the birth and are in good health,” said Zoo director Andreas Knieriem on Monday.
READ ALSO: Berlin panda Meng Meng gives birth to twins
The newborn pandas. Photo: DPA
The first boy was born shortly before 7pm on Saturday. Almost an hour later the second followed.
The new panda mother and the offspring's father Jiao Qing have been living in Berlin Zoo since summer 2017. They are both on loan from a reserve in Chengdu, China.