Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Penguin guano shows problem of pollution

Penguin guano in the Antarctic is adding to organic pollutant problems there, according to a report to be featured in a Royal Society of Chemistry publication.

Unexpectedly high levels of organic pollutants were found in the soil around a colony of non-migratory Adelie penguins in the Antarctic.

Penguins are initially exposed to the contaminants by eating polluted fish, which have been contaminated through the food chain. Bioaccumulation means that the penguins have high levels of contaminants in their bodies.

The soil around the colony is then contaminated by penguin guano and carcasses.

Monday, July 30, 2007

Adelie penguins

Adelie penguins (Pygoscelis adeliae) at Rothera Point , Adelaide Island , Antarctica


Sunday, July 29, 2007

Penguin Teaboy

Tea too strong? Too weak? Problem solved.

This nattily attired tea penguin always brews the perfect cup.

Set the timer for your ideal brew time (from 1 minute up to 20) and he lowers the teabag into the water. When the time is up, he lifts it out. Couldn't be simpler or more fun.

3" diameter, 8" tall.


Saturday, July 28, 2007

Video: Penguin Drama Unfolds as Antarctica Heats Up

Recent temperature increases in the icy continent are impacting some penguins' abilities to feed and breed, creating population dips in species that can't handle the heat.

Go into the field with researchers studying Antarctica's wildlife, and find out which of the penguin protagonists are adapting to a warming world—and which are suffering.

Friday, July 27, 2007

Book Brings Penguins Into Boardrooms

Until recently, John P. Kotter was known in business circles as a well-respected author of management books and a longtime professor at Harvard Business School.

Now he is known as “the penguin guy.”

Last year, Mr. Kotter rewrote his 1996 book about organizational change, “Leading Change,” for a new generation of business readers. But this time, he recast it as a fable about a talking penguin named Fred who mobilizes the entire penguin colony against the threat of its melting iceberg.

With bright colorful illustrations and large text, “Our Iceberg Is Melting: Changing and Succeeding Under Any Conditions” looks at first glance more like a children’s book than something a chief executive might read. But the book is attracting readers and creating a penguin movement in boardrooms around the world, Mr. Kotter said.

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Bluko, The Active Penguin

Bluko, The Active Penguin
Bluko's Bio:
- Bluko is only 6.5cm tall
- He is an active penguin, and if he could speak, he probably is a chatty one.

You can wear Bluko on your bag, hang in the car, any hook at home, or chain it around your keys.

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Perky Marshmallow Penguins

Get the recipe here.

Monday, July 23, 2007

Saving Penguins

Environmentalist Richard Tesore hydrates penguins covered with oil in Piriapolis, Uruguay. At least 100 penguins were found on several Uruguayan beaches covered with oil, most of them dead.

(Photo credit: Andres Stapff - Reuters)

Sunday, July 22, 2007

The Penguin in comics

The Penguin (Oswald Chesterfield Cobblepot), is a DC Comics supervillain and is an archenemy of Batman. He was introduced by artist Bob Kane and writer Bill Finger, he first appeared in Detective Comics #58 (December 1941).

In most incarnations, The Penguin is a short, chubby man who wears a tuxedo, top hat, and monocle. A mobster-type criminal, he fancies himself a "gentleman of crime."

The Penguin does however possess a few eccentricities. He is known for his love of birds and his high-tech umbrellas that serve some specialized function, such as hang-gliding and weaponry. He also keeps beautiful women around him; perhaps to remind others of his monetary power or to compensate for his own grotesqueness.

Saturday, July 21, 2007

Friday, July 20, 2007

Paris the penguin plays up

A PENGUIN named after Paris Hilton has ended up mimicking the behaviour of the socialite heiress.

The penguin was named after the society girl when her incessant screaming for food raised fears over her parents' health.

Staff at Scarborough Sea Life Sanctuary put penguin Paris behind bars in a fenced off section to give the parents, Dick and Dougal, a break - but in more star-like adventures, Paris escaped and had to be locked up once more.

Animal care expert Lyndsey Crawford said: "Although she should be fending for herself by now, and will eat whole fish when the staff dole them out, she still constantly pesters her parents to get them to regurgitate more food for her.

"As long as she is still able to see the other penguins through the bars of the fence and can chatter to them and occasionally touch bills, the separation shouldn't be too hard on her."

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Mr Munro a penguin with mojo

Meet Mr Munro, the cheeky penguin setting hearts aflutter at Taronga Zoo.

The fancy Fiordland is the key to the Zoo's penguin breeding program - and is definitely living up to his nickname - "Mr Smooth".

With the help of Mr Munro and his two female companions Milford and Chalky, Taronga is now the only zoo in the world with a breeding program for the Fiordland penguin - but the program almost didn't happen.

Milford and Chalky have lived at the zoo since washing up on the east coast of Australia in 1994.

However, without a mate, there was no hope of breeding the endangered species from New Zealand's south island.

Enter Mr Munro, who washed up one year ago with his sexy yellow feathers and red beak.

In a promising sign, the union has produced the first batch of eggs in many years, with a second batch expected over the next two weeks.

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Struggling penguins felled by parasite

Something is killing this spring's crop of yellow-eyed penguins.

It's not the stoats, cats and hedgehogs that plague the nests and chicks of seabirds elsewhere.

In March, Big Fluffy, a three-month-old chick just days from independence, was found dead on the Anglem coast of Stewart Island.

His loss was the full stop to a season-long death sentence that claimed every last one of the colony's penguin chicks.

Big Fluffy was named because he was fully feathered, had put on good body weight and plenty of fat reserves.

He should have made it.

But a postmortem at Massey University found leucocytozoon - a blood parasite carried by sand flies - in his liver, producing symptoms similar to malaria.

Leucocytozoon first turned up in penguin chicks in 2004, the final blow in a one-two combination led by another disease, diphtheritic stomatitis.

Also known as avian diphtheria, it struck yellow-eyed penguins from Oamaru to Stewart Island, sapping their breeding effort in 2005 to a record low.

Monday, July 16, 2007

10 Penguin Species Could Gain Endangered Species Protection

The U.S. government has announced it is advancing the emperor penguin and nine other penguin species toward protection under the federal Endangered Species Act. The action comes in response to a formal administrative petition filed by the Center for Biological Diversity in November 2006 seeking protection for the species, as well as a June 2007 Notice of Intent to Sue the agency for failing to respond to the petition. The primary threats to penguins are global warming and industrial fisheries.

Abnormally warm ocean temperatures and diminished sea ice have wreaked havoc on penguin food availability in recent decades. Less food has led to population declines in species ranging from the southern rockhopper and Humboldt penguins of the islands off South America, and the African penguin in southern Africa, to the emperor penguin in Antarctica. The ocean conditions causing these declines have been linked by scientists to global warming and are projected to intensify in the coming decades.

Sunday, July 15, 2007

Impostor penguin!

Don't be fooled, this is NOT a penguin!


Saturday, July 14, 2007

Egg Penguins

Get the recipe here.

Friday, July 13, 2007

Penguin Egg

An Adelie penguin protects its egg from the elements and predatory birds at Cape Royds, Antarctica. (Tribune Photo by Chris Walker)

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Swimming lessons for penguin Jack

Jack was taken from his parents when he was just an egg because keepers at Paulston's Park were worried they wouldn't be able to look after him.

That meant Jack had to use a paddling pool to start swimming, and was taught by a person instead of a penguin.

Now he's learnt to swim Jack is ready to dive into the big pool with the other penguins - including his brother.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Penguin Diet Change Caused by People?

Around 200 years ago, a group of Antarctic penguins started a dramatic new diet: they switched from eating mostly big fish to a diet of tiny crustaceans.

And, new research suggests, humans might have forced the change.

Researchers Steven Emslie and William Patterson analyzed more than 220 fossilized penguin eggshells ranging in age from 100 to 38,000 years old. The scientists collected the shells from abandoned Adelie penguin colony sites from three major regions in Antarctica: the Ross Sea, East Antarctica and the Antarctic Peninsula.

The scientists expected to find that the birds' diets shifted with the ever-changing climate. Instead, they discovered a "dramatic shift in penguin prey high on the food chain, such as fish, over most of the past 35,000 years to prey — krill — lower on the food chain occurring very recently, within the past 200 to 300 years."

At precisely that time, humans began an unprecedented killing of seals and whales in Antarctica.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Spike is a baby used to being waited on hand and foot.

The new King Penguin chick is being hand-reared at Birdland in Bourton-on-the-Water.In answer to a shrill whistle, the pint pot penguin gets his feed on the dot at 8am, noon, 4pm and 8pm.

And the 8in grey-downed baby, weighing in at 546 grams, thinks assistant headkeeper Alistair Keen is his mum.

The 27-year-old said: "Unfortunately his real mother, Beryl, had no male showing significant interest. Dad is supposed to do half the work sitting on the egg and then feeding the baby. So mum couldn't cope on her own."

Monday, July 9, 2007

Singing Penguin

Rockhopper Penguin "singing" by Cheryl Ertelt

Friday, July 6, 2007

Ice Blue Igloo and Penguins

This icy abode and cute web-footed friends consist completely of sweets, including fruit-flavored gelatin, sugary gumdrops and cream cheese frosting. With simple-to-use ingredients, you can quickly make your own igloo and penguins, too. So why not raise them for family or friends today...and enjoy a pleasing whimsical treat?

Get the recipe here.

Thursday, July 5, 2007

Penguin babies join Shedd Aquarium flock

A newly hatched penguin at Shedd Aquarium has spent the first 25 days of its life wedged between its mom and a hard place.

That's because a good penguin mother sits on her newborn to keep it warm and safe. Typically, she and her mate take turns, alternating 12-hour shifts.

This chick, known simply as 220, is the oldest of three Gentoo penguin chicks that have hatched at Shedd in the last month. The others are 16 and 8 days old, and, like 220, have numbers rather than names—the trainers find it easier to keep track of the penguins that way. They don't even know if the chicks are male or female—it's almost impossible to tell just by looking.

Wednesday, July 4, 2007

Penguins in the Heat

from flickr, by kansasexplorer

Tuesday, July 3, 2007

Penguins' struggle is a warning to world

Adelies are being stalked by a threat they cannot see and cannot fight off: the weather. The birds, which have adapted over millions of years to the most extreme climate on Earth, are beginning to die off by the tens of thousands as a result of global warming.

The Adelie penguin is regarded as an "indicator" species, an animal so delicately attuned to its environment that its survival is threatened as soon as something goes wrong. So as temperatures rise, Adelies are among the first to feel the effects, early victims of the devastating worldwide changes that scientists expect if the warming persists and intensifies.

Monday, July 2, 2007


An Adelie penguin leaps over a crack in the ice near the penguin colony at Cape Royds, Antarctica.

Sunday, July 1, 2007

Penguin Feet

Gentoo penguin feet by Mike Danzenbaker