It's not every day you get to brush feathers with rock and roll legends like Ace Frehley and Slash, but in Denver, all it takes is a visit to the zoo.
Brittney Weaver started working at the Denver Zoo about six years ago. She also happens to be a big music fan, regularly attending heavy metal and rock shows with her husband. In 2008, the zoo received nineteen flamingo eggs from a wild Caribbean herd in Miami. Weaver named them after rock guitarists, and she's been doing it ever since. Now, there are nearly 74 flamingos with rock icon names in the zoo.
Astonishingly, Weaver can recognize and name every bird. Among them is Les Paul, Santana, (Ronnie James) Dio, Jimmy Page (Led Zeppelin), Alexi Laiho (Children of Bodom), Randy Rhoads (Quiet Riot), Steve Vai, Zakk Wylde (Black Label Society), Yngwie Malmsteen, Jimi Hendrix, Kerry King (Slayer), Tony Lommi (Black Sabbath), Dave Mustaine (Metallica, Megadeth), George Harrison, Steve Harris (Iron Maiden), K.K. Downing (Judas Priest), Angus Young (AC/DC) and Elvis. In the early summer, when the birds start pairing up and nesting, some unlikely couples surfaced. Marty Friedman of Megadeth shacked up with Slash, and Joe Satriani found a connection with Eddie Van Halen. This motley crew of birds recently welcomed three new babies to the family, and the zoo held a contest to decide on the names. After receiving over 700 entries, Brittney and her colleague have chosen Gibson and Johnny Cash. The final name is still under debate.
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