Moody Gardens gets holiday treat with penguin chicks
Santa made a special trip to Moody Gardens in Galveston this year for Christmas with the delivery of several penguin chicks.
One Southern Rockhopper penguin chick made its debut a few days ago, and there was also the arrival of two new Gentoo penguin chicks on December 23.
These latest additions to the South Atlantic Exhibit brings the total number of Gentoo penguins from 10 to 12. The parents of both the Gentoo chicks are Marvin and Wiley.
The Gentoos hatched in the Aquarium Pyramid where they reside with 80 other King, Macaroni, Rockhopper, Chinstrap and Gentoo penguins. These new chicks mark another successful breeding season at the Association of Zoos and Aquariums accredited facility.
“While we have had quite a few Gentoo chicks we are always thrilled to welcome the next generation. We are having a banner year and are hoping that it continues into next year as well,” said Diane Olsen, Assistant Curator.
Adult Gentoo penguins have yellow feet, making them unique in the Moody Gardens exhibit. They also have distinct white patches above the eye and white speckling in the adjacent black plumage around their heads.
Gentoo penguins are currently listed as “lower risk-near threatened” by the International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources. Because of their strong popularity, penguins play an influential role as ambassadors for wildlife conservation.
The small, fuzzy birds can be seen at the South Atlantic exhibit with the other Moody Gardens penguins. The public can watch the penguins in the Aquarium Pyramid or on the Live Penguin Cam at http://www.moodygardens.com/penguinwebcam/.
For more information, call 1-800-582-4673 or visit www.moodygardens.org.
Moody Gardens® is a public, non-profit, educational destination utilizing nature in the advancement of rehabilitation, conservation, recreation, and research.
PHOTO CREDIT: JERRI HAMACHEK