Friday, June 24, 2011

An Emperor Penguin in New Zealand?

People were shocked this past Tuesday morning on Peka Peka Beach in New Zealand when an Emperor Penguin came waddling out of the water. Somehow this penguin, whose natural habitat is Antarctica, ended up 4000 miles away on New Zealand’s north island. Wildlife experts assume that the bird got disoriented while hunting for food in the ocean, and may have made much of the journey on an ice floe. This is the country’s first wild penguin sighting in over 40 years.
Conservationists originally decided that it would be best to not interfere and hope that the penguin, estimated to be about 10 months old, would find its way back home. However, the penguin has recently been taken to a zoo hospital, as it has become ill from eating wet sand, mistaking it for snow.
The penguin has been named Happy (after the movie Happy Feet), and everyone is hoping he’ll be healthy enough to be released soon.


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