Get ready to meet Squirt, Sal, South and Tubbs — four African Black-Footed Penguins that are spending their summer at the Beardsley Zoo located on 1875 Noble Ave. in Bridgeport Connecticut. They will be on exhibit from May 7 through Sept. 30 — so make plans to stop by and see them. They are charming and fun to watch.
The Penguins will be in a temporary exhibit across from the Zoo’s Peacock Cafe. Their Education Department is planning Wild Adventure Animal Shows, Animal Bytes storytelling and scavenger hunts — all designed to help you learn, and care, about penguins.
These medium sized penguins, that weigh between two and three pounds are found along the African shore and considered to be endangered. Overfishing of their prey, oil spills and guanaco are just some of the reasons why this species of penguin is in decline.
One of their distinctions is a pink patch above their eyes that is actually a gland that helps them adapt to changing temperatures. The hotter the penguin gets, the pinker the gland turns. These penguins are also known for their unusual call that sounds like a donkey that is braying. Each individual penguin also has a black stripe with black spots on their chest and, much like fingerprints, no two are the same.
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Photo courtesy of Gulfarium Marine Adventure Park.