Facebook/Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden

In honor of rock legend David Bowie's 69th birthday and just two days before his death, an Ohio zoo named its newly hatched penguin "Bowie."

The legendary musician died on Sunday after a battle with cancer. He had released his last album, "Blackstar," on his birthday on Friday.

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Bowie the penguin hatched Friday making it the first birth of 2016 at the Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden. The zoo solicited names on Facebook with "Bowie" and "Elvis" the most popular suggestions since Jan. 8 also is Elvis Presley's birthday.


The penguin keepers chose the name Bowie because the zoo already had a king penguin named Elvis.

RELATED:Where does David Bowie's 'Blackstar' rank amongst his latter-day records?

The new Bowie is one of the zoo's 33 members of a species known as "little penguins"—the world's smallest penguin species. The Cincinnati Zoo's colony of little penguins—also known as blue or fairy penguins — is the largest in the United States.

Little penguins, unlike king penguins, prefer milder temperatures so visitors are not likely to see Bowie and the rest of the colony until spring, said bird keeper Jennifer Gainer.

There's still a chance that Ali the aardvark will give birth today, but the little penguin chick hatched at 6am, making...

Posted by Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden on Friday, January 8, 2016