SF’s California Academy of Sciences is bringing back its beloved tradition of presenting heart-shaped valentines to its penguin colony. Don’t miss this one-of-a-kind event on February 12th and 14th at penguin feeding times (10:30am and 3pm). Visitors can watch the festivities at the African penguin habitat in Tusher African Hall.
The male penguins usually accept the hearts and bring them back to their female counterparts to line their nests in an adorable display of penguin love! The valentines all bear charming messages handwritten by high school interns from the Academy’s Careers in Science program.
The Academy’s colony of African penguins is part of a Species Survival Program, which works to cultivate a healthy and genetically diverse animal population to ensure long-term species survival. Academy scientists plan enrichment activities like these “penguin valentines” to encourage breeding behavior and bonding between the animals.
Two baby penguins recently hatched at the Academy and are still being cared for separately until they’re mature enough to join the rest of the colony. But don’t worry — they didn’t miss out on the festivities! The chicks, affectionately named Pogo and Oswald “Ozzie” Cobblepot, received their own valentines at the beginning of February.
The Academy of Sciences has some of the most advanced research facilities and fascinating exhibits in the world. If you haven’t been to the Academy (or if, like us, it’s been way too long since your last visit), there’s no limit to the amazing experiences you can have. Some popular exhibits include Claude the albino alligator, the Osher Rainforest aflutter with hundreds of free-flying butterflies, and the Morrison Planetarium.
Find the Academy of Sciences at 55 Music Concourse Drive in San Francisco’s Golden Gate Park.