Hello friends and family.
We have had rain! It has been enough to break the drought here and a huge relief for the plants that were dropping leaves with the big dry. The penguin chicks are water proof enough with their new juvenile plumage to enjoy the rain and use it as a trigger to preen. Of course the place turns to mud very quickly, but that is a manageable issue really.
In the colony, the mothers are coming under pressure. The one that abandoned her chicks has returned to keep her partner company, but one of the mothers down the hill is now keeping the neighbour company. Fortunately, she only had one chick and dad should be able to keep up with its demands, but we will keep a close watch on it.
Another mum has succumbed to an infected foot and come into care - she too had only one chick that dad should be able to raise on his own, but another watch is in place. She is going to have surgery in Dunedin tomorrow.
The hospital chicks are showing signs of an infected throat so the vet has been out and done more swabs. When eating hurts, they see each meal as a threat and fight and peck, not a good plan when nutrition is so important for growing bodies.
Yesterday our great team spent the time clearing out dead trees and creating more space for penguins at Okahau point. It was nice to see the sun again.
Have a great week!