Ill zoo penguin's health holding steady 

Harry the Penguin’s health has neither deteriorated nor improved in recent weeks, San Francisco Zoo officials reported.

The Magellanic penguin – who famously left his longtime same-sex partner Pepper last year in favor of female penguin Linda   – became ill in December with a very serious respiratory infection.

The zoo removed both Harry and Linda to their Avian Conservation Center for treatment, since the non-contagious disease is frequently fatal for the waddling birds.

The situation was dicey at first, but Avian curator Harrison Edell reports that it has stabilized.

“Harry’s white blood cell count indicates that we haven’t lost ground, but that we’re not out of the woods,” he said. “His body weight has plateaued … his appetite seems good, and we will continue to treat him with antibiotics.”

Edell said Harry will be treated until his white blood cell count improves and x-rays prove that he has truly conquered the illness.

Meanwhile, partner Linda is fine – if a little attached to her sick companion, Edell said.

“Linda’s doing well, and prefers to remain within two feet of Harry at all times,” he said.

kworth@sfexaminer.com

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Katie Worth

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Saturday, Apr 21, 2018

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