London Zoo's first penguin chicks of 2001
Wednesday 14 February 2001
Photo Opportunity..... Photo Opportunity..... Photo Opportunity
Date: 15 February 2000
Venue: London Zoo (East Service Gate)
Contact: Joe Laing 020 7449 6236 or Debbie Curtis 020 7449 6363
SPRING COMES EARLY FOR CHICKS AT LONDON ZOO
London Zoo’s first penguin chicks of 2001 have hatched. The black-footed penguins, native to South Africa, were born at the beginning of February.
The two chicks, Caroline (12 days) and Max (9 days) are being hand-reared by keepers and are certainly making their presence felt -- shrieking loudly at the first sign of food.
The siblings were initially being fed a combined liquid and solid diet and, after a week or so, the chicks are ready to start on whole fish diet. Once the chicks are two-and-a-half months old and have developed their waterproof feathers, they will be reintroduced to the rest of the group of penguins currently at London Zoo.
Last year, black-footed penguins were seriously threatened when there was a large oil spill off the coast of South Africa, placing this species in real danger. This led to one of the biggest wildlife rescues ever. The Zoological Society of London (of which London Zoo is a part) sent a keeper to South Africa from Whipsnade Wild Animal Park, to assist with the care of the oiled birds. These penguins are not only threatened by pollution but also by over fishing and the illegal trade in egg collection.
Notes to Editors:
- Naming penguins is always a tricky task as they are difficult to sex at an early age. London Zoo currently has a female called Elvis!!
- The liquid diet is made up of sprat, saline solution and vitamin supplement, which is all liquidised in a Robot Coupe food processor R101, the only food processor up to the task.
- Black-footed penguins are also known as jack ass penguins because of the donkey-like noise they make.
For further information please contact the
Zoological Society of London's Public Relations Office:
Joe Laing: 020 7449 6236
or Debbie Curtis: 020 7449 6363
Fax: 020 7449 6362
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