Staff at Paradise Park in Hayle Cornwall are delighted to have baby Humboldt’s Penguin chicks.
Humboldt’ Penguin chicks Aurora and Miski and Keeper Oliver Frost
Curator David Woolcock said “These two wonderful little characters are proving very popular with visitors. They are now ten weeks old and have been given the Peruvian names ‘Miski’ and ‘Aurora’. They eat around 200g of fresh fish a day, and are being hand-reared as the eggs were laid outside the nesting caves so not protected from weather or disturbance.
Another younger chick, called ‘Poppy’, was not putting on enough weight when she was with her parents, so the decision was taken to hand-rear her as well. One other chick is being successfully reared by its parents in the nest.”
The chicks when they were first being hand-reared
When chicks are in the nest they have fluffy grey down feathers. It takes about three months for them to leave their nests, and by this time they have develop the waterproof plumage they need for swimming. Juveniles are grey and white, only developing the distinctive black and white penguin plumage at a year old. The pattern of dark speckles on their lower chest are unique to each penguin, identifying each individual.
Miski and Aurora are now being introduced to the Humboldt’s Penguin group at Paradise Park, and making regular appearances at the twice daily feeding times.