Posts Tagged ‘Detroit Zoo’

New Penguin Center In Detroit

April 4, 2016

The Penguin Post has learned that the new Polk Penguin Conservation Center will be unveiled to the public on April 18 at the Detroit Zoo. The new home for the zoo’s 83 penguins is shaped like an iceberg and is “designed to set a new standard for penguin care and conservation worldwide”, according to the Zoo.


On top of the new look, the penguins will have ten times the amount of water: about 325,000 gallons of 37 – degree water. The aquatic areas will also allow the penguins to dive 25 feet below the surface, making the new center the deepest man-made penguin environment anywhere, as well as the largest penguin facility in the world.

Special events are planned for the opening of the center, including a sold-out, black tie, fundraising gala on April 9, called “An Evening in Antarctica.” There will also be a presentation from world-renowned polar ecologist and penguin expert Dr. Bill Fraser on April 10 at 6pm at the zoo’s Ford Education Center. Tickets can be purchased on the Detroit Zoo’s website and are $25.


Midwest Penguin Bonanza

May 25, 2014

The Penguin Post has learned that it’s a good time to be a penguin near the Michigan-Ohio border. The Toledo Zoo’s resident African penguins will spend Memorial Day weekend settling into their new home after Friday’s grand opening of Penguin Beach, the zoo’s new $3.5 million habitat for the birds. Meanwhile, officials at the Detroit Zoo in Royal Oak are preparing to break ground June 17 for their own new penguinarium, called the Polk Penguin Conservation Center. The exhibit is projected to cost roughly $29 million, according to zoo officials, and about $24 million already has been raised. It is slated to open in late 2015.

Toledo Zoo's Penguin Beach

Toledo Zoo’s Penguin Beach

Penguin Center in Detroit Begins To Take Flight

April 10, 2014

The Penguin Post has learned that yesterday, The Detroit Zoo announced that contractors will break ground on the $26 million Polk Penguin Conservation Center in May.  DBusiness reports that this project will last 18 months and is the largest project ever undertaken by the zoo. The new exhibit will be located on 2.1 acres near the zoo’s entrance in Royal Oak and is expected to increase attendance by 100,000 people each year.  Below is an artists rendering of the soon to be new Penguin House.AR-140419992

Rockin’ Rockhoppers In Motown

February 3, 2012

The Penguin Post knows the Detroit Zoo in Royal Oak very well as it’s within walking distance of my in-laws home, and now we have one regret that we decided to opt for Florida rather than Detroit for our recent Winter holiday, as the zoo in Royal Oak is off to a rockin’ start this month.  Rockin’ as in Rockhoppers as the zoo welcomed seven new rockhopper penguins to their always improving Penguinarium. The four males and three females range in age from 1 to 26.  They arrived in December from Chicago’s Lincoln Park Zoo after its seabird exhibit closed. They were held in quarantine for 30 days.  And now they’re hanging out with the zoo’s other penguins. “The Detroit Zoo is a great place for these birds because we have a lot of experience working with rockhoppers, and our penguin habitat provides temperature and light conditions similar to their former home. This is especially important for the older penguins as it can sometimes be difficult for them to adjust to environmental changes,” said Detroit Zoological Society Curator of Birds Tom Schneider.

Found in the steep terrain of the sub-Antarctic islands, the rockhopper penguin (Eudyptes chrysocome) gets its name from the way it hops from rock to rock. The rockhopper is among the world’s smallest penguin species, standing up to 20 inches tall and weighing about 7 pounds. The black-and-white bird is distinguished by the crest of spiky yellow and black feathers that adorn its head. It has red eyes, a red-orange beak and pink webbed feet.

Naming a Penguin For Lauren

June 9, 2011

In memory of 4-year-old Lauren Colombo who lost her battle with cancer in May the Flushing Early Childhood Center community wants to name an animal at the Detroit Zoo that was dear to Lauren’s heart — a penguin. Lauren loved clothes decorated with penguins, had more than 100 penguin stuffed animals and had the chance to meet a penguin shortly before she died. “I think this is a nice way to honor the Colombo’s. They are a strong family,” said ECC Principal Kaye Brisson. “They lived every day. They didn’t dwell on her death. I wish I could be like that.” School officials are raising funds to adopt a Rockhopper penguin in Lauren’s name. The money raised will go to the Detroit Zoo and the zoo staff will put a plaque up recognizing Lauren and the contribution made in her name. Contributions will be accepted at the ECC, 409 Chamberlain St. Flushing, MI 48433 until June 15. Checks can be made out to the Detroit Zoo. Cash should be turned in inside an envelope labeled with the contributor’s name and “Penguin Project.” Until that same day, students at the ECC will have the chance to come up with names for the penguin to honor Lauren. Lauren’s parents, Mike and Gina Colombo, will make the final decision. And students aren’t wasting any time with name selections, Brisson said. “You’d be surprised with what they are coming up with,” she said. Some suggestions were Captain Colombo, Waddley, Rocky, Colombo, Puddles, Lauren, Happy Feet, Hopper and Leilani, which is Hawaiian for heavenly child in love, Brisson said.

Lauren Colombo, 4, of Flushing meets a real penguin at the Detroit Zoo May 10 with her mother, Gina, and father, Mike. Lauren, who died of cancer last month, was described by her family as a passionate penguin lover.