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Penguins take a "field trip" in closed aquarium

CBS News logo CBS News 3/16/2020 Natacha Larnaud
a close up of a bird: BRITAIN-ZOO-OFFBEAT-STOCKTAKE-ANIMAL © DANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS BRITAIN-ZOO-OFFBEAT-STOCKTAKE-ANIMAL

Penguins at Chicago's Shedd Aquarium went on a small "field trip" to explore the building after it closed its doors to visitors amid coronavirus fears. The aquarium shared a video of a group of rockhopper penguins taking a walk inside the facility and visiting the other animals. 

The video shows Wellington the penguin particularly excited to see the fish in the Amazon exhibit — and those fish "also seemed interested in their unusual visitor," the aquarium said in the tweet.

The aquarium told the Chicago Tribune that caretakers are "getting creative in how they provide enrichment to animals" and "introducing new experiences, activities, foods and more to keep them active, encourage them to explore, problem-solve and express natural behaviors."

The video, which was viewed almost 200,000 times as of Monday morning, cheered up a number of viewers at a time when fear and anxiety are prevalent. 

Replay Video

"Thank you for making me smile," one user wrote. "Please keep doing this. This is the content we need right now," another added. 

In addition to the aquarium and other large facilities shutting down, Illinois Governor JB Pritzker announced Sunday afternoon that all restaurants and bars in Illinois will close effective at the end of the business day on Monday, and continuing through March 30, due to the coronavirus pandemic. 


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