Australia

Penguins big beach day out

It is not unusual to receive visitors during the festive season, however, on New Years Day a surprise guest graced the South West with its presence. A northern rockhopper penguin was discovered catching some rays on Redgate Beach. Parks and Wildlife Service were promptly made aware of the visit, and took the penguin to a wildlife rehabilitator. The wildlife rehabilitator will look after the penguin while it prepares to undertake its natural moulting process. The penguin will be returned to the ocean when ready. Northern rockhopper penguins are known to breed on Amsterdam Island and St Paul Island in the Indian Ocean. A Department of Biodiversity, Conservation and Attractions spokesperson said they were infrequent visitors to WA shores. “This penguin has most likely come ashore to moult its feathers, during which time it will not feed or enter the water until the feathers have been replaced and are waterproof,” they said. “Several penguins have been sighted along the south west coast during summer, including rock hoppers and little penguins. “There are currently three rock hopper penguins in care in the South West, waiting to moult their feathers and be returned to the ocean to make the journey back to their feeding areas in the Indian Ocean.” Members of the public are advised not to disturb native wildlife and keep pets away from animals. If you find sick or injured native wildlife, call the Wildcare Helpline on 9474 9055.

This Northern Rockhopper Penguin was an unusual sight for beachgoers at Redgate on January 1. Image Carolyn Forte.

It is not unusual to receive visitors during the festive season, however, on New Years Day a surprise guest graced the South West with its presence.

A northern rockhopper penguin was discovered catching some rays on Redgate Beach.

Parks and Wildlife Service were promptly made aware of the visit, and took the penguin to a wildlife rehabilitator.

The wildlife rehabilitator will look after the penguin while it prepares to undertake its natural moulting process. The penguin will be returned to the ocean when ready.

Northern rockhopper penguins are known to breed on Amsterdam Island and St Paul Island in the Indian Ocean.

A Department of Biodiversity, Conservation and Attractions spokesperson said they were infrequent visitors to WA shores.

“This penguin has most likely come ashore to moult its feathers, during which time it will not feed or enter the water until the feathers have been replaced and are waterproof,” they said.

“Several penguins have been sighted along the south west coast during summer, including rock hoppers and little penguins.

“There are currently three rock hopper penguins in care in the South West, waiting to moult their feathers and be returned to the ocean to make the journey back to their feeding areas in the Indian Ocean.”

Members of the public are advised not to disturb native wildlife and keep pets away from animals.

If you find sick or injured native wildlife, call the Wildcare Helpline on 9474 9055.

This story Penguins big beach day out first appeared on Busselton-Dunsborough Mail.

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