Magic Magellanic

Posted: 3rd October, 2018

Blackpool Zoo is the only zoo in the UK where you can see Magellanic penguins, and now they have five more!

Five female Magellanic penguins have travelled from Germany and Italy to their new home at Blackpool Zoo. A specialist animal transportation vehicle was used to ensure they travelled in style at a constant temperature of 10 degrees, with experts checking on their progress every few hours.

After arriving at Blackpool Zoo they were transferred into the bird nursery for final health checks before moving into an introduction area to meet their new pool mates. They are now fully integrated into the group and are loving their new home in the Active Oceans Arena.

Luke Forster, who heads up Blackpool Zoo’s bird department, explained: “We have enjoyed huge breeding success and as a result our group had more males than females.

“This species is near threatened in the wild so we spoke to the European Association of Zoos and Aquaria (EAZA) as they manage a breeding programme. Penguins are generally monogamous and our younger males didn’t have partners, so now they have the chance to couple up!

“The five females were selected by experts to join our bachelor boys and we have already seen promising signs of success. Some of the boys are now taking up residence in the nest boxes and calling to the females, which is great.

“The new arrivals are aged between two and three, and while they won’t be mature enough to mate for another few years, it is good to let them settle in and form their pairs."

The group now consists of 20 individuals, including a chick that hatched this year.

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