Saturday, March 31, 2007

Humboldt Penguin

(Photo: AFP/DDP/Joerg Koch)

Friday, March 30, 2007

Feeding the Baby

(AP Photo/Brian Witte)

Thursday, March 29, 2007

Somebody home?

from flickr, by Remco Douma

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Tuesday, March 27, 2007


from flick, by Leanne A

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Videeo: Pingu Dance Rap

In 1989, David Hasselhoff released (in Switzerland only) the single "Pingu Dance", a rap song based on the Pingu shorts and featuring a number of samples of Pinguish.

Saturday, March 24, 2007

Visitor waddles in and makes itself at home

A fairy penguin popped into the Clark family's Tasmanian home for a visit on Wednesday and spent the day in the bathtub.

Sometime before Wednesday morning, the little penguin had waddled about 100 metres up the beach, crossing a railway track and a road in the process and wandered into the Clark's front yard in West Ulverstone about three hours northwest of Hobart in Tasmania.

Garry Clark said when the front door was opened to let the dog out to the toilet, the penguin entered.

"The dog went out and a penguin came in," Mr Clark said.

"I was in getting ready for work and my son came in and said `Dad, there's a penguin in the lounge room'.

"I thought, `that can't be right'."

But a penguin in the lounge room there was, and a friendly one at that.

Mr Clark said the animal appeared quite comfortable and made no problem when it was picked up.

The penguin was popped in the bathtub with a little water for the day.

"We sat him in there and he splashed about in the water every now and again."

A bit of thawed salmon from the freezer did not tempt the penguin.

On advice from the Parks and Wildlife Service, the penguin remained in the tub until Wednesday evening.

Then the Clark family gathered it up and took it across to the beach to let it go.

Friday, March 23, 2007

Penguin popularity pleases MSU grad students who lived among them

Two Montana State University graduate students who lived among the penguins of Antarctica are happy that the birds have become so popular.

Movies, commercials and even home furnishings celebrate the penguins that Matt Becker and Dave McWethy hiked across glaciers and canoed across frigid bays to study. The doctoral students watched penguins bow under 100 mph winds and felt the slap of flippers against their legs. They ached for penguin parents who laid eggs in a nest of pebbles, warded off sea birds, watched their babies hatch, made long daily commutes for seafood and then lost their young to leopard seals.

"I think it's great, the intense interest," said Becker of Bozeman ."The penguins are certainly worthy."

Thursday, March 22, 2007

The gift

For gentoo penguins, it's all about who's got the best rocks. Like a human offering jewelry, this gentoo male at the Edinburgh Zoo presents a large pebble on Tuesday in hopes of winning over a female.

But sometimes finding the flashiest gifts isn't enough. During the mating season—which begins in March and lasts up to six weeks—males suffering from "pebble envy" will steal the best-looking rocks and pawn them off as their own.

The pebbles will eventually become parts of the penguins' nests—large circular piles of stone that can reach 8 inches (20 centimeters) in height and 10 inches (25 centimeters) in diameter.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007


Tuesday, March 20, 2007

'Surf's Up' rides a penguin wave

First there were marching penguins, then they sang and danced. In June, they will surf.

After Happy Feet's Oscar win for best animated feature and 2005's smash documentary March of the Penguins, does the world really need another penguin movie?

Yes, say the people behind Surf's Up, an animated comedy due June 8 that explores the world of competitive surfing, penguin-style.

"It's clear to us that people love penguins," says Surf's Up producer Chris Jenkins.

Jeff Bridges, the voice of Big Z, a reclusive washed-up surf champ, sees definite potential: "Maybe the penguin wave is still cresting."

Monday, March 19, 2007

Kroger, the penguin chick

The Newport Aquarium is proud to announce the birth of a baby King penguin chick. On Feb. 14, Aquarium biologists discovered a King penguin chick emerging from an egg under a nesting female.
The new chick isn’t yet visible to the public as it is currently nestled under its mother in the exhibit. The chick will begin to fully venture out from under its parent in about 30-40 days.

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Sea World vows to rebuild penguin population

Gold Coast theme park Sea World in south-east Queensland says it will rebuild its decimated fairy penguin population.

Twenty-five penguins died from an unknown toxin after the gravel in their enclosure was routinely changed last week.

Marine sciences director Trevor Long says the 12 surviving penguins are in quarantine and are expected to survive.

He says it is possible to rebuild the population.

"We're very fortunate that we have got a good group of birds here in Australia," he said.

"There's birds in all zoos in Australia, a good stud book, so we'll be communicating with the stud book coordinator and with the other zoos getting surplus birds' breeding back up.

"We've still got a good mixture or a reasonable mixture of genetics, so we'll be able to continue breeding up ourselves."

Mr Long says Sea World workers are devastated by the deaths.

He says each bird was named and staff handfed the animals twice a day.

"These staff are dedicated professional people and they are deeply saddened, and they're devastated that this has occurred," he said.

"It was an event that you couldn't identify and you couldn't foresee, so they're extremely hurt at the moment."

Saturday, March 17, 2007

Leprechaun Penguin

Spread some lucky green grins with an original Leprechaun penguin by JGoode.

Friday, March 16, 2007

Mystery toxin devastates penguins

An unidentified toxin in gravel that attacks the brain, kidney and liver has been blamed for the deaths of 25 fairy penguins at Sea World on the Gold Coast.

Trevor Long, marine sciences director at Sea World, described the deaths of the fairy, or little, penguins at the popular theme park as a "sad day for all".

"There is a toxin involved and it's injured the brain, the kidney and the liver (of the penguins)," Mr Long explained today after receiving a preliminary report from Brisbane laboratory INDEXX.

"We don't know what it is and we don't know how it's got there.

"We're assuming it's come in with some ... gravel that's been changed, but until we get more information it's very hard to say."

Sea World's manager of marine sciences Steve McCourt said he suspected the deaths were caused by a load of contaminated gravel placed in the birds' enclosure as part of three-monthly maintenance.

Thursday, March 15, 2007

Baby Penguins

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Animal Antics

“The moment happened so quickly I had little time to think. I was taking a break from hiking when the reflection of the penguins in the wet sand grabbed my attention. I had only a few seconds before they passed. I put the camera on aperture priority at f/8 and framed the penguins in the zoom lens, panning as they hopped. The ISO was set at 100 and I was worried it wouldn’t be fast enough, but there was no time to change it. So I held on tightly to the camera, wrapped my arm over the lens, and concentrated on ‘being penguin’ as I tracked them in the viewfinder.”

Animal Antics Winner
Nature's Best Photography Windland Smith Rice International Awards
The Neck, Saunders Island, Falkland Islands
by Laura Crawford Williams

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Monday, March 12, 2007

Maryland Zoo's Baby Penguin Gets Novel Operation

When workers at the zoo noticed the penguin stumbling shortly after he was born they began a slew of tests to examine his condition. Veterinarians found the bird's vertebrae were angled abnormally. At first they thought he might still be able to function normally because they had seen a similar but less-serious problem before.

"We were wrong; he started having trouble walking and eventually was tumbling over," Bradford said.

Zoo veterinarians sent the yet to be named penguin - whose coat will remain gray until he reaches adulthood - to get an MRI at the IAMS Pet Imaging Center in Northern Virginia. The imaging confirmed what veterinarians feared, the hump on his back was the result of vertebrae misalignment, resulting in the need for a complicated procedure - the first of its kind for a penguin.

Sunday, March 11, 2007

The Scoop on Penguins - Feathered Fish or Bodacious Bird?

What swims like an olympic champion? What plunges underwater holding its breath like a free diver? What slides like a baseball player racing to reach base?

A penguin, of course!

Penguins are birds that can toboggan on ice using their webbed feet to propel them. The fastest penguin, the gentoo, can swim about 15 miles per hour, faster than long-distance runners. Penguins can also dive very deep, some to depths of about 1,750 feet. They use their wings (which are really like flippers) to propel themselves in the water. It looks as if they are “flying” underwater, something they cannot do in the air.

Saturday, March 10, 2007

Friday, March 9, 2007

Chinstrap Chicks

Thursday, March 8, 2007

Aquarium prepares for the patter of happy feet

ANTARCTIC penguins will soon be on display for the first time in Australia as part of a $20.6 million redevelopment of the Melbourne Aquarium.

The tourist site will double in size to 6000 square metres, with much of the expansion to be taken up by the new Antarctic penguin exhibit.

Large king penguins, which are almost one metre tall, and smaller gentoo penguins will feature in the new enclosure, scheduled to open early next year.

It is believed that the exhibit, which may include some Antarctic fish and marine invertebrates, will re-create Antarctica's climate.

"What we are trying to do is give the guest an experience and a visual representation of what a visit to Antarctica might be like," said the aquarium's general manager, Rob Taranto.

Wednesday, March 7, 2007

'Surf's Up' rides a penguin wave

First there were marching penguins, then they sang and danced. In June, they will surf.

After "Happy Feet," which won an Oscar for best animated feature and 2005's smash documentary "March of the Penguins," does the world really need another penguin movie?

Yes, say the people behind "Surf's Up," an animated comedy due June 8 that explores the world of competitive surfing, penguin-style.

"It's clear to us that people love penguins," says "Surf's Up" producer Chris Jenkins.

Jeff Bridges, the voice of Big Z, a reclusive washed-up surf champ, sees definite potential: "Maybe the penguin wave is still cresting."

So, are penguins officially the new dogs?

Tuesday, March 6, 2007


from flickr, by Ella's Dad

Monday, March 5, 2007

Art by Georg Williams

Sunday, March 4, 2007

Soft Penguin Speakers

It’s fun to share your music
With these cute and cuddly stuffed animals with built-in speaker and amplifier on your desktop, bookshelf or anywhere you take your music. Just plug in your iPod, MP3, music player or computer to hear and share your favorite tunes.
(photo credit)

Saturday, March 3, 2007

African penguin population drops 40% - cause unknown

African penguin populations have fallen by 40 percent in the past few years according to an article published in the March 2, 2006 issue of Science. Biologists are puzzled by the decline.

Rob Crawford, a penguin expert with South Africa's Environmental Affairs Department, is quoted as saying the trend is "quite disturbing." He believes the drop may be due to scarcity of sardines and anchovies around penguin colonies, a development that may be the result of over fishing or larger environmental changes. The article notes that the South African government is evaluating various measures to protect penguins including "establishing no-fishing zones around several breeding islands."

The article says the African penguins numbered more than 1.5 million in 1910, but guano scraping and egg harvesting over the past century reduced their population by 90 percent. While the population rebounded in the early 1990s, two oil spills (1994 and 2000) took a further toll on the species. Today there may be fewer than 120,000 remaining in the wild, the bulk of which live in South Africa. Smaller numbers are found in Namibia.

Friday, March 2, 2007

Thursday, March 1, 2007

The Penguin Lady: Local teaches new generation to care about animals

Georgetown resident Dyan de Napoli will never forget the day she first entered a South African warehouse in 2000 to work as a rehabilitation manager with the first team of penguin experts working to save 20,000 penguins. The flightless birds were covered with oil when the iron ore ship MV Treasure sank near their breeding grounds.

“The smell hit me like a wall and made me gag,’” says de Napoli. “It was this putrid smell of oil, guano, sardines, human sweat, coal dust and food being cooked for volunteers. Before returning home I had to throw away my clothes, shoes and backpack or there would have been a riot on the plane.”

Out of 20,000 oiled birds, 91 percent were successfully rehabilitated and returned to the wild, the largest number of a single species ever to be rescued and rehabilitated. She is writing a book on her experiences during the massive international rescue effort.

Fortunately for the penguins, a 17-year-old student had invented a first-stage degreaser one year before the spill, says de Napoli.