Arrival of the fairy penguins
Weymouth SEA LIFE welcomes Europe's first colony
Weymouth SEA LIFE Adventure Park recently welcomed a colony of fairy penguins to their brand new enclosure, believed to be the only colony of fairy penguins in the whole of Europe!
Weymouth SEA LIFE invested over £100,000 on the new boardwalk style enclosure and Dorset was chosen as their new home, due to the climate being similar to the penguins natural habitat on the southern hemisphere. The fairy penguins (also known as 'little blues') are the world’s smallest penguin measuring just over 25cm tall and weighing a tiny 1 kg!
With their passports stamped and crates loaded onto the plane, the new arrivals were greeted at Heathrow airport by Jo Mullen, Weymouth SEA LIFE Aquarist, who oversaw their safe arrival. Jo said, “When they left Australia they were put in couples, so they each had a travel buddy. They have all settled in really well”.
Notable characters in the colony include Armani, who has unusually eats his fish tail-first, and Mugatu, the youngest of the group who has just celebrated his first birthday.
Tamsin Mutton-Mcknight, general manager of Weymouth SEA LIFE, said: “We are thrilled and honoured to have been given this fantastic opportunity to give a home to the first colony of fairy penguins in Europe. This is a huge milestone for Weymouth SEA LIFE and we are extremely grateful for the loyal support which we have received over our 35 years of operation.
“Our new enclosure will put Weymouth on the map by educating the country about this species of penguin, while strengthening our links with other zoos and aquariums through the breeding programme we plan to create.
“We are looking forward to introducing our new residents to our loyal guests and welcoming new visitors from across the country once the new enclosure has opened. We will be sharing updates of our new residents on our social media channels".