Denver Zoo’s famous same-sex Flamingo couple, Freddie Mercury and Lance Bass have parted ways after years-long relationship that made headlines.
The zoo said their breakup was amicable. They also said the notion of “mating for life” isn’t true for all birds, adding that their flock of 75 flamingos has seen some couples stay together forever, while others “shamelessly” jump from partner to partner.
The post shared on pride week read;
“Happy Pride! We’re celebrating some of the diverse animal kingdom families who call the Zoo home, and today we’re featuring our fabulous flockstars, our Chilean and American flamingos! Flamingos are extremely social by nature and flocks consist of collections of partnerships. This includes not only male-female breeding pairs, but also strong bonds between same-sex pairs. While our famed, same-sex couple Chilean flamingo Lance Bass and American flamingo Freddie Mercury are no longer a pair, they were paired up for several years and acted as surrogate parents if a breeding pair was unable to raise their chick. Our flock is 75 birds strong, which allows our birds to flamingle with a variety of individuals and personalities, giving them many options on who to form associations with.”
Denver Zoo then shared a follow up post to shed some light on why they believe Freddie and Lance split up.
“It seems like our flamingo post yesterday may have ruffled some feathers and we want to sincerely apologize…for leaving everyone in the dark so long as to why our same-sex flamingo pair Freddie Mercury and Lance Bass split up!
“Freddie repaired with Iommi, one of our fourteen-year-old female American flamingos. Iommi has been around Freddie for nearly her entire life without any indication of a bond before, so keepers aren’t exactly sure why these two decided to pair up. As for Lance, keepers haven’t noticed him in a new concrete bond with anyone else at the moment,” the zoo shared.
“Our flock allows our birds to choose who they decide to form associations with and we’re happy to celebrate their pairings this month and every month. Happy Pride!”
Back in 2019, Freddie, an American flamingo who’s bright pink, and Lance, a Chilean flamingo with lighter feathers wanted to be together all the time. They engaged in mating behavior and built a nest together. If a breeding couple ever abandoned one of their eggs, Freddie and Lance could take over surrogate parenting duties.
Freddie came to Denver in the 1970s. Before Lance came along, Freddie was in a monogamous relationship with a female flamingo for years.
As for 20-year-old Lance, who was born at the zoo, he hasn’t formed a new bond with another bird yet, but he might abandon the bachelor life in the future. Denver Zoo has 80 Chilean and American flamingos to choose from.