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There are 17 Humboldt penguins at the Zoo: 7 males, 8 females, and 2 unsexed chicks.
Pinto: Male, hatched at Woodland Park Zoo in Seattle, Washington, on November 28, 1998. He came to Philadelphia on October 8, 2013. He does not have a band.
Hercules: Male, hatched on January 14, 1991 at Sea World, San Diego. He came to Philadelphia on October 8, 2013. He has a green band on his right flipper.
Winkie: Female, hatched at the Philadelphia Zoo on May 12, 1996. She does not have a band on either of her flippers.
Emperor: Male, hatched at the Philadelphia Zoo on April 6, 2000. He has a blue-pink band on this right flipper.
Otis: Male, hatched at the Philadelphia Zoo on May 28, 2001. He has a blue-white band on his right flipper.
Little Bird Junior (LBJ): Female, hatched at the Philadelphia Zoo on May 31, 2001. She has a yellow-white band on her left flipper.
Calfred: Female, hatched at the Philadelphia Zoo on April 18, 2002. She has a yellow-pink band on her left flipper.
Fausto: Male, hatched on April 22, 2007 at the Akron Zoo in Ohio. He came to Philadelphia on April 5, 2012. He has a black-gray band on this right flipper.
Jamaican Me Crazy: Male, hatched at the Philadelphia Zoo on April 9, 2009. He has a yellow-green-orange band on his right flipper.
Belleza: Female, hatched on July 22, 2009 at the Rosamond Gifford Zoo in Syracuse, New York. She has an orange-purple band on her left flipper.
Sushi: Female, hatched on January 8, 2011 at the Roger Williams Park Zoo in Rhode Island. She came to Philadelphia on October 8, 2013. She has a purple band on her left flipper.
Margherita: Female, hatched at the Philadelphia Zoo on January 26, 2011. She has a black-yellow-black band on her left flipper.
We also have three as-yet-unnamed penguins:
Female, hatched at the Philadelphia Zoo on April 13, 2000. She has a pink band on her left flipper.
Female, hatched at the Philadelphia Zoo on May 1, 2013. Her sire (dad) is Fausto. She has a blue-green-purple band on her left flipper.
Male, hatched at the Philadelphia Zoo on June 4, 2013. His parents are Shamrock and the first unnamed female listed above. He has orange beads on his right flipper.
Finally, we have two brand-new penguins, siblings, hatched on July 6 and July 8, 2014. The proud new parents are Calfred and Jamaican Me Crazy. The chicks are too young for us to know if they are male or female yet.
Feedings usually can be seen around noon on weekends.
The Humboldt penguin is mostly blackish-gray in color with a white breast. The adults have a black horseshoe shaped band on the breast and a white head stripe. They are between 26 and 28 inches long and weigh 8-13 pounds. Males are slightly larger than females. The Humboldt penguin has a strong and powerful bill that is black with a gray transverse bar and a hooked tip. Their flipper is a modified wing that lacks flight feathers. When on land they look ungainly, but in the water they are amazing streamlined swimmers.
Humboldt penguins nest on islands or on rocky stretches of mainland coast, especially in areas with cliffs.
Humboldt penguins live an average of 10 years but birds in captivity can live longer than 20 years.
The penguins breed in large colonies known as rookeries. They use their feet to excavate burrows or nest in caves or natural crevices. Their nests are lined with feathers and are constructed by the male. They will breed any time of year, and females usually lay a clutch of two or rarely three eggs. The eggs are laid about three days apart. Incubation is 40 days and is done by both parents. Both parents also feed the chicks by regurgitation. One of the largest known breeding colonies is found at Punta San Juan, Peru.
Humboldt penguins are intensely social and gregarious and are usually found in groups. They have superb swimming skills, which rivals seals and porpoises.
The wings of the Humboldt penguin have evolved into flippers that propel them through the water. Their stiff, close-packed feathers overlap for better insulation and water proofing, and their bodies are highly streamlined to ease their passage through water.
Between 26-28 inches long.
They weigh 8-13 pounds.
In the wild, Humboldt penguins eat small schooling fish like anchovies and sardines. In the Zoo, they receive five types of fish. Their diet is based on the calories needed for different stages of life along with a variety of supplemental vitamins. They are fed three times a day at the Zoo. Trout and silversides seem to be their favorite fish, although their preferences do change at different times of the year.
The Humboldt penguin is found on the west coast of South America along the coast of Chile and Peru in the region of the cold water Humboldt current.
On the 2007 IUCN Red List of Threatened Species, the Humboldt penguin is listed as Vulnerable.
To learn more about the conservation efforts at the Philadelphia Zoo, click here.
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