Natureland nurturing little blue penguin back to full health and home by Christmas


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Blue penguins are the world’s smallest penguins, standing just 25 to 30cm tall.©BRADEN FASTIER/STUFF

A blue penguin found hungry and dehydrated is being rehabilitated at Natureland.

The penguin was picked up in Marahau and handed into the Department of Conservation before being taken into care by the Tahunanui zoo.

Natureland keeper Lena Olley said he didn’t have any obvious signs of injuries but he was starving.

Plans to release him back into the wild meant ensuring the bird had little contact with people and keeping him waterproof.

A penguin losing its water-resistance could be detrimental to its survival.

“We get some seawater from the ocean and make a pool and we make sure we put him in there regularly.”

Olley said she couldn’t be certain why the bird was found in poor condition but some reasons included food supply, ocean temperatures and disease.

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