Taronga wildlife hospital returns five penguins to the wild

Taronga wildlife hospital returns five penguins to the wild

#Rehabilitation Stories , #Taronga Zoo Sydney

Posted on 18th April 2018 by Media Relations

On Tuesday 17th April, Taronga Wildlife Hospital staff released five healthy Little Penguins into the ocean in Manly after nursing them back to health in the Taronga Wildlife Hospital.

The birds arrived at Taronga from Newcastle, Maroubra, Mosman, Bondi Beach and Manly over the past two months. Injuries included dehydration, a fishing hook injury and a broken foot.

Taronga Wildlife Hospital manager, Libby Hall, said, “Most of the penguins were brought to Taronga Wildlife Hospital by members of the community who saw them in difficulty and took action. The community’s awareness of Little Penguins and other wildlife is increasing all the time and by acting quickly, they give us the best chance to help the birds through difficult times.”

The penguins were nicknamed by the Taronga Wildlife Hospital:

-          Bondi, found on Bondi Beach

-          Footsie, found in Newcastle on Stockton Beach

-          Nigel, found Chowder Bay in Mosman

-          Margaret, found in Maroubra

-          Collin, found on Collins Beach in Manly

Little Penguins are particularly vulnerable during their annual moult, as they cannot return to the water until the new feathers have grown through. Due to the fact they cannot return to the water to feed, they become emaciated and weak so are vulnerable to domestic pets, most particularly dogs.

The Taronga Wildlife Hospital cares for around 1000 native animals each year. The animals are brought to the hospital after being found sick, injured or orphaned.

The colony at Manly is the last remaining on the mainland of NSW, with other colonies now located on islands which offer some protection from pressure from humans and domestic pets.

People can help Little Penguins at beaches by keeping dogs on leashes, not leaving rubbish including fishing line hooks around and protecting habitat at the shoreline.

-ENDS-

Imagery and footage can be found here

 

For media enquiries or more information, contact:

Sarah Lievore, 9978 4606, 0403 513 963, slievore@zoo.nsw.gov.au