Some of you who have been following our penguin stories for a while may remember our sponsored adult male called "Wotan" - nicknamed the Magnificent - he is a gorgeous bird (they all are!!) He was a little unlucky in love, his wife ran off and joined another colony and is breeding there, and our Mr Magnificent was alone for a couple of years - not for lack of trying, mind. He has finally succeed with a sweet young thing: at 2 years oldl she has laid him an egg and here he is proudly looking after it.
So far our tally stands at 43 pairs with eggs. We are coming to the end of egg laying and we are unsure whether there is going to be more. We are unable to find almost a third of our old females (including Kiri, Diesel Dick's first daughter who would have been 24 years old this year). The sweet young things have made up for it somewhat though: we have eight 2-year old females on eggs, and another five 2-year olds thinking about it. They may yet give their eager older partners an egg, but time is running out. We expect to have final nest numbers by this time next week. So far 3 fewer nests than last year. Where ARE those females? Probably dead. 😢😢😢
When you own a house on a hillside and you are planning a family, it's good to have a decent verandah so the kids don't fall down the hill....
This yellow-eyed penguin pair has chosen a house on a steep hillside and overtime the front had worn away - not a problem for the parents, but once they have excitable chicks that dance about after meals, there is the danger they fall down and into the bushes and can't get back up. So we have built them a verandah with a wee barrier that hopefully will keep the chicks safe. Now all they have to do it lay eggs!!!