Adorable African Penguin Hatches at the Denver Zoo
The Denzer Zoo made an exciting announcement this week, regarding a fluffy new addition to the African penguin flock.
On November 10, penguin parents Sinclair and Wesson welcomed an adorable newborn chick into the world. This is the first African Penguin to hatch at the zoo in three years. It's also the first chick for the black-and-white pair of breeding birds.
When the egg was initially laid, zoo keepers observed it to be abnormally small compared to normal African penguin eggs. To give the unhatched penguin the best chance of survival, keepers kept the egg in an artificial incubator inside the Avian Propagation Center. Meanwhile, Sinclair and Wesson were given a fake egg to sit on.
Upon hatching in early November, the chick was smaller than usual. However, keepers are happy to report that the baby bird has been growing like crazy and is right on track developmentally. The penguin chick will be sexed in a few weeks and given a name after that.
Eventually, the chick will join the rest of the feathered flock in the new Pinnacol African Penguin Point habitat but for the next few weeks, the little one will remain behind the scenes with its mom and dad. Sinclair and Wesson are adapting well to being first-time parents and their baby is becoming more confident day by day.
Because African penguins are listed as Endangered by the IUCN, this is considered a huge win for conservation efforts of this species. Threats such as oil spills and overfishing have sadly caused this species of penguin to dwindle by the thousands.
According to the Denver Zoo, these flightless birds are also known as black-footed penguins. In the wild, they live only on the coastal islands and the mainland of southwestern Africa, from Namibia to South Africa.