The Adélie penguin specimen, immediately named Pingu by residents, has been spotted more than three thousand kilometers away from its natural habitat
a traveling penguin: this must have been thought by the residents of Birdlings Flat, a settlement in Canterbury, in New Zeland, when they discovered a specimen of Adélie penguin (Pygoscelis adeliae) by the sea. The reason? This species has its natural habitat on the coast of the Antarctic, more than three thousand kilometers from where it was found.
The penguin, which was promptly renamed Pingu by local residents, he was spotted by Harry Singh and his wife during a walk. The two, they told the Bbc
, initially they thought of a toy abandoned on the beach, but then they realized that it was a real animal.
The man posted a video on Facebook, in the group of Birdling Flat residents, and a “romantic” photograph, which immortalizes Pingu immobile, with his gaze turned to the sea. He didn’t move for an hour, he looked exhausted, the man said. Singh then called him penguin rescue team experts, worried that the animal did not enter the water and could be attacked by predators living around the beach.
Thomas Stracke, a penguin expert who has worked with them for over ten years in southern New Zealand, was also contacted. The expert was shocked to discover that it was an Adélie penguin and wanted to see it as soon as possible together with a veterinarian.
The animal was recovered in the evening and taken to a clinic to be subjected to some exams: the underweight and dehydrated penguin was immediately fed with drips. Once fully recovered, he will be released on a safe beach on the Banks Peninsula.
This is the third sighting of a penguin from Antarctica in New Zealand: the first was an adult corpse found north of the mouth of the Flaxbourne River, in Marlborough, in December 1962, and the second a live specimen in Kaikoura in January 1993. Yes these are isolated episodes, but if they become more frequent in the future it would be a worrying sign. I think if we started seeing annual Antarctic penguin arrivals, we could deduce that something has changed in the ocean, said Otago University zoology professor Philip Seddon. Guardian
. More studies will give us a greater understanding of where penguins go, what they do, what population trends are like – they will tell us something about the health of the marine ecosystem in general.
November 12, 2021 (change November 12, 2021 | 22:06)