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Posted on 07/02/2020 by Phillip Island Nature Parks

Little wonders update

Phillip Island is home to the world’s largest colony of Little Penguins. Our passionate team cares for the over 32,000-strong colony through daily research and management.

 

What’s happening:

  • Breeding success is looking very positive with an unusually early start producing heavy, healthy chicks.
  • Chicks are now fully grown and have gone to sea by themselves (fledged).
  • Adults are preparing for their annual moult – more about that in our Autumn update.

This summer, the team has been tracking penguins at sea and monitoring their health on land. We use some pretty cool, high-tech gadgets to do this, including fitting the birds with a ‘fitbit’ so researchers can measure their daily activity. They work a bit like the E-tags in our cars so, as the penguins waddle up the ‘penguin highway’ after a day’s fishing at sea, they cross a weighbridge with a scanner. The data is then delivered directly to our research team.

All the technology is used to minimise penguin handling and distress while collecting important information to assist in their survival.