The California Academy of Sciences recently announced that two penguins have hatched in their African penguin colony. These are the first chicks to have hatched at the Academy since 2018, with birthdays on November 1st and 3rd.
These chicks are part of the Species Survival Plan which is aimed at sustaining endangered African penguin populations worldwide. Needless to say, it’s an exciting event for the Academy staff and penguin lovers everywhere. While the new chicks aren’t on display yet, you can keep an eye on the rest of the penguin colony via their live penguin cam.
The chicks’ official names will be determined through a naming contest in January. These adorable chicks will spend the first few months attending “fish school,” where they’ll learn to swim on their own, eat fish (with the help of biologists), and other important penguin life skills. These chicks will join the bustling 13 penguin colony at the Academy in late January 2023.
“African penguins have been classified as an endangered species since 2010, and with only about 10,000 breeding pairs left in the wild they face a very real risk of extinction in their natural environment,” commented Brenda Melton, Director of Animal Care and Welfare at the Academy’s Steinhart Aquarium. Melton went on to highlight the critical conservation work done by the Academy, and fieldwork in South Africa with the goal of increasing the number of these birds in the wild.
You can visit the African penguin colony at the Califonia Academy of Sciences at 55 Music Concourse Dr, San Francisco.
Featured image courtesy of California Academy of Sciences. Photo by Tim Wong.