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Aquarium Announces New Penguin Chick
Robin Riggs
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The first-ever loggerhead sea turtle to be tagged off the U.S. West Coast, along with two of the NOAA Fisheries scientists who tagged him, Jeff Seminoff (left) and Tomo Eguchi.  | Ralph Pace

Animals | Penguins

July 23, 2015

The Aquarium of the Pacific is announcing the birth of a Magellanic Penguin chick. The chick hatched on June 5 and represents the third generation of Aquarium-born penguins. Four penguins hatched in 2014 (Paddles, Jayde, Mattson, and Skipper) and two in 2013 (Heidi and Anderson).

Penguins Roxy and Floyd are the parents of this year’s chick, and Heidi, Anderson, and Skipper are its siblings. Magellanic Penguin chicks are born with a downy layer of plumage that is not watertight. For safety reasons, the Aquarium’s penguin chicks are removed from their parents’ or surrogates’ nests after twenty-five days to a behind-the-scenes nursery until their down is replaced by watertight juvenile feathers, a process called fledging. The chick’s gender will be determined through a blood test around the time it fledges. During its time in the nursery, the chick will learn to swim and to take hand-fed fish. The baby will make its public debut and join the other penguins in the June Keyes Penguin Habitat on Tuesday, August 18.

The public can help support the nonprofit’s new penguin chick through the Adopt an Animal program. People who adopt a chick at the $50 level or above will be entered into an opportunity drawing for a penguin encounter and a one-of-a-kind painting by a penguin chick.

Magellanic Penguins are a temperate species native to the coasts of Argentina and Chile in South America. It takes between thirty-eight and forty-three days of incubation before a Magellanic Penguin egg will hatch. Chicks hatch with their eyes closed, and they are able to open their eyes about a week later. Magellanic Penguin parents take turns incubating the eggs on the nest and feeding and raising the chicks after they hatch.

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