|Common Name||Fairy Penguin, and Blue Penguin|
|Range||Coastlines of Southern Australia and New Zealand, with possible records from Chile.|
The little penguin (Eudyptula minor) is the smallest species of penguin. It lives primarily in Australia and New Zealand. It's aliases include Blue penguin, Little blue penguin, Fairy penguin, and Korora. It is called Pinguino pequeno, and Pinguino azul in Chile.
The little penguin grows up to 13 inches tall and weighs 3.3 lbs. It's head and back are a bluish-slate color, with it's belly and neck being white. It's grey beak is 4 cm long. It also has a grey color to it's irises and has large pink feet.
The little penguin is diurnal, spending most of it's day in the water, hunting for prey. It keep it's short feathers water-proof using oil deposited by an oil gland near the end of the tail. They prefer being more terrestrial than aquatic.
Little penguins only remain faithful to their mates during the breeding and the hatching of the eggs. They will breed in pairs or in large colonies. They make nests close to the sea in a burrow-like order. They may also construct them in caves, take over an abandoned burrow, rock crevices, under stacks of wood, even in buildings! 1-2 brown mottled are laid in the moths between July and November. Incubation takes 36 days. Then, when the chicks hatch, they are brooded for 18-38 days and develop feathers after 7-8 weeks. Usually, they will leave the chicks in the burrow and hunt all day for them. They return to their colonies to feed their newborns at dusk.
It eats krill, crustaceans, fish, and squid.
Most individuals live for 6.5 years, but some are reported living for 10-20 years.
Fur seals, foxes, dogs, cats, ferrets, stoats, orcas, humans, sharks, and leopard seals are the primary predators of this helpless bird. Cars frequently hit these penguins.
They dwell on the coastlines of Australia, New Zealand, Tasmania, and even in areas as far away as Chile, and South Africa.
Due to their various predators, their numbers are declining, but not at a considerable risk. They are still listed as a Least concern species. Their numbers are estimated at 600,000. Luckily, they seem to be very adaptable to human environment.
- They are the smallest penguin
- They are the only known species of penguin that will produce more than one clutch of eggs during a breeding season