Penguin Sweaters Wanted

March 7, 2014

The Penguin Post has learned that The Penguin Foundation has a global call out for knitters to make pullovers for penguins in rehab.  The reason is that penguins caught in oil spills need the little sweaters to keep warm (as they lose their natural insulation) and to stop them from trying to clean the toxic oil off with their beaks. Knitter Lyn Blom is the receptionist at Phillip Island Nature Parks in Victoria and has knitted many penguin jumpers over the years. The Penguin Foundation is based at Phillip Island, which is known for having a large penguin colony. Lyn Blom says it’s not just major oil spills that cause problems for local penguins. “Fishermen might clean out a container or something while they’re at sea,” says Lyn. “It’s a continuing problem,” she says. “We get probably about 20 birds a year.” One advantage of knitting a penguin sweater is that they are small since the Australian Little Blue Penguin is the smallest of all the penguin species. “They’re very quick,” says Lyn. The Penguin Foundation also distributes the jumpers to other wildlife rescue centres where needed.

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You can download more information about how to knit for penguins, including the knitting pattern and where to send the finished product. While the Penguin Foundation’s website says it currently has a ‘good supply’ of the little jumpers, the organisation also uses them in educational programs as well as selling them as a fundraising measure. In 2011 the foundation raised money for a new Phillip Island Wildlife Rehabilitation Centre which can house up to 1500 penguins in the event of a major oil spill.

This Penguin Can Fly

February 23, 2014

As told to the Penguin Post a special penguin-shaped hot air balloon will become the newest addition to the ever growing fleet owned by Gloucestershire, England based Exclusive Ballooning as they celebrate their 15th birthday.

A Facebook competition is also running until Wednesday to decide upon a name for the balloon.

The penguin is the result of a design competition, where hot air ballooning fans were invited to submit online designs for a character balloon with the winning design being turned into reality. The winning design is based on a character from a sketch by Bristol,UK based artist Tom Moore.

The 70,000 cubic feet penguin shape hot air balloon will be built in Spain by specialist manufacturer Ultramagic using revolutionary new techniques in order to make this one of the lightest special shapes ever built.

The penguin already has his own website blog following ‘his’ production from sketch to reality and then following his adventures around the world.

Andrew Holly, managing director of Exclusive Ballooning, said: “We love the design of this penguin balloon and think it will make a real splash at the balloon festivals it will be visiting around the world. This balloon will be a real crowd-pleaser and Tom has done a great job in designing something simple and easy to identify with. Everybody loves a penguin.”

You can say that again.

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Penguins Given Anti-Depressants

February 8, 2014

One would think that penguins are use to bad weather, but the Penguin Post has learned that the penguins in a British animal sanctuary are so miserable about the current state of the weather in the U.K. they are being given antidepressants. It seems the constant wind, rain and snow that has lashed the country this winter has the Humboldt penguins at the Sea Life Centre in Scarborough down in the dumps, the Guardian reports. “Humboldts in the wild on the coast of Peru and Chile can be subjected to some pretty wild extremes of weather,” curator Lyndsey Crawford told the Guzelian news agency. “What they don’t get though is weeks of almost daily downpours and high winds. “After the first week out birds were just a bit subdued, but after over a month now, they are thoroughly fed-up and miserable, much like the rest of us.” This is not the first time the animals have become anxious from a change in routine. Three years ago, they became stressed after a trespasser broke into their enclosure and had trouble producing eggs again. The antidepressants are being administered to try to circumvent any more serious symptoms that might arise as a result of the penguins’ misery. “They’re doing the trick so far, but we are all praying for the weather to change and at least a few successive days of sunshine to give the penguins the tonic they really need,” said Crawford.

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Emperor Penguins Looking For Protection

January 22, 2014

The Penguin Post has learned that in response to a petition from the Center for Biological Diversity, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announced today that the emperor penguin may warrant Endangered Species Act protection based on threats from climate change. The most ice-dependent of all penguin species, emperor penguins are threatened by the loss of their sea-ice habitat and declining food availability off Antarctica.

“Our carbon pollution is melting the sea-ice habitat emperor penguins need to survive,” said Shaye Wolf, climate science director at the Center. “Emperor penguins are the icons of wild Antarctica, and they need rapid cuts in carbon pollution and Endangered Species Act protections if they’re going to have a future.”

Emperor penguins rely on sea ice for raising their chicks and foraging. In parts of Antarctica where sea ice is rapidly disappearing, emperor penguins populations are declining or have been lost entirely. The emperor penguin colony featured in the film March of the Penguins has declined by more than 50 percent, and the Dion Island colony in the Antarctic Peninsula has disappeared. One recent study projected that nearly half of the world’s emperor penguins may disappear by mid-century without drastic cuts in carbon pollution.

Warming ocean temperatures and melting sea ice in the Southern Ocean encircling Antarctica have also diminished the availability of krill — a key food source for emperor penguins. Ocean acidification resulting from the ocean’s absorption of carbon dioxide and industrial krill fisheries further threaten the penguins’ food supply.

In 2006 the Center filed a petition to list 12 penguin species, including the emperor penguin, as threatened or endangered. The agency protected seven penguin species but denied protection to the emperor penguin. In 2011 the Center re-petitioned the Service to protect the emperor based on new scientific information demonstrating the species is imperiled. In today’s finding the Service agreed to conduct a full scientific status review to determine if the emperor penguin should be protected under the Act.

Endangered Species Act listing of the emperor penguin would offer greater protections against the greenhouse gas emissions driving climate change and the industrial overfishing of key prey species. For example, if penguins are listed, future approval of fishing permits for U.S.-flagged vessels operating on the high seas would require minimization of impacts on penguins. The Act also compels federal agencies to ensure that their actions — including those generating large volumes of carbon pollution — do not jeopardize endangered species and their habitat.

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Valentine’s Day Penguin Gifts

January 22, 2014

Our Valentine’s Day Penguin treats now have their own section and range in the dozens of penguins. From Valentine Penguin Cards, Watches, Plush of all sizes, Jewelry, Houseware and more.  So if you’re looking for a special, romantic penguin themed gift for that penguin loving special someone then waddle on over to our Penguin Valentine’s Day Section.cozycutievalentineplushpenguin

Noodles and Albie In Homestretch

January 22, 2014

After almost a year in the making all the wonderful oil color paintings by artist Liz Bannish have been completed.  The much anticipated kids picture book Noodles & Albie (The Penguin and The Fish) will be going through e-book and print book layout and design over the next month in preparation for its debut.  Noodles & Albie is the story, by Eric Bennett, of a young penguin (Noodles) who is afraid of the water.  When he finally gets up enough courage to take go for a swim, he invariably gets lost at sea and is befriended by a colorful and sassy fish named Albie who helps him find his way home.  Along the way they both grow and learn the true meaning of friendship, while running into a cast of colorful underwater characters.  In conjunction with the story Ms. Bannish has created 14 original paintings.  Look for the official debut of Noodles and Albie sometime in March 2014 available via the Penguin Gift Shop at Penguin Place.

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Baby Penguin Named Peyton In Omaha

January 22, 2014

The Penguin Post has learned that Peyton Manning certainly gained some fans in Omaha throughout the past week and now he can add arguably the most adorable one to that growing list.

The Denver Broncos quarterback uttered “Omaha” over 40 times in the team’s AFC Divisonal round win over the San Diego Chargers, and the Nebraska city is basking in all of the unexpected attention. Omaha can’t thank Manning enough for all of the free advertising, and five businesses in the Nebraska city even pledged to donate $500 to Manning’s charity for every “Omaha” he yelled at the line of scrimmage against the New England Patriots. Manning ended up raising over $24,000.

The Henry Doorly Zoo in Omaha has also jumped on the Manning bandwagon, choosing to name a Rockhopper penguin chick after the quarterback.

“I think the whole world knows how much Nebraskans love football,” Omaha Zoo Director Dennis Pate said in a press release. “It’s fun to hear such a great quarterback chanting out our largest city’s name hundreds of times per game. We get a kick out of it and are happy for Peyton and his team.”

Meet Peyton the penguin below.

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Penguin Running Rings Around Itself

January 12, 2014

This wonderful picture of an Adelie penguin on ice who appears to be running rings around itself as one can see via his intricate tracks. The penguin looks like it’s trying to find a way across the various ice floes. But to where we do not know.  The Adelie penguin was pictured as part of US photographer John Weller’s mission to shoot the world’s last remaining pure ocean – the Ross Sea in Antarctica. He started working on the project, named The Last Ocean, with Antarctic Ecologist Dr David Ainley in 2004. Weller’s first short film on the Ross Sea was a finalist in the 2010 Blue Ocean Festival.££-The-Ross-Sea-in-Antarctica-3008504

A Nice Day For A Penguin Wedding

January 12, 2014

You’ve heard of a “white wedding”, well why not a “black and white wedding”?  Well, a  couple did just that on Friday as they tied the knot at Seaworld’s Antarctica: Empire Of The Penguins exhibit. The Penguin Post is happy to announce that Jeff and Susanne Grieve braved the chilly conditions and exchanged their vows in the company of family, snow and a whole lot of penguins. 250 penguins to be exact, and of course they were all dressed for the occasion in their natural black and white tuxedos. The cool wedding in the Antarctic environment was perfect for this couple after meeting in 2012 while working in Antarctica. They said they wanted to recreate the moment where it all started. “Antarctica is a really intense, remote environment, where we met,” Susanne said.  For the time being Seaworld will have to do to replicate that feeling, and the human guests all agreed that it was a great thing this was a heart-warming occasion, because it was a constant 32 degrees throughout the wedding ceremony. The couple said they hope to return to the real Antarctica one day, but are planning a warm weather honeymoon.1389479209983

Emperor Penguins Adapting To Climate Change

January 10, 2014

Climate change has made a profound impact on thousands of the plants and animal species. The threat triggered by the rapidly changing climate continues to reveal itself in new ways.  But, the Penguin Post has learned that a new study by the British Antarctic Survey scientists, which was based on satellite observations of four emperor penguins, shows a ray of hope for the sea bird as they seem to be adapting themselves to the changing environment.

“This is a new breeding behavior we’re witnessing here,” said Peter Fretwell, a geographer with the British Antarctic Survey and lead study author. “This has totally taken us by surprise. We didn’t know they could go and breed up on the ice shelves,” Fretwell said.

The current study highlights the extraordinary change in the behavior of the emperor penguins that breed during the harsh Antarctic winter when the emperor penguins breed.  

The satellite observation reveals that the penguin colonies drifted from their traditional breeding grounds to much thicker floating ice shelves that surround the continent. This change in the breeding behavior occurred when the sea ice formed later than usual.

Scientists at the Australian Antarctic Division and the Scripps Institution of Oceanography at UC San Diego in California also worked on the current study.

Fretwell explains that these birds breed on sea ice as this gives them an easy access to waters where they can forage for food. One such satellite observation of the penguins during 2008, 2009 and 2010 revealed that the annual sea ice was thick enough to maintain a colony of penguins. But in 2011 and 2012, it was surprising to see that sea ice did not form even a month after the breeding season started. At this point of tome the birds were seen going to the nearby floating ice shelf to raise their chicks.

“What’s particularly surprising is that climbing up the sides of a floating ice shelf – which at this site can be up to 30 metres high – is a very difficult manoeuvre for emperor penguins. Whilst they are very agile swimmers they have often been thought of as clumsy out of the water,” he continues to say.

Since these birds heavily depend on sea ice for breeding purpose, they were listed as ‘near threatened’ by the International Union for Conservation of Nature’s “red list” of endangered species.

This latest discovery may help scientists to frame the future of these scientists. The team plan on finding if  other species are also adapting themselves to the changing environment conditions.

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