A pair of gentoo penguin chicks has hatched at Edinburgh Zoo. One was born on the 4th of March with the other following two days later. They are the first penguin chicks born at Edinburgh Zoo this year.
Keepers are expecting another egg which has already started to crack to hatch in the coming days. Following this a number of eggs will continue to hatch. The current pair can be seen on the zoo’s Penguin Cam. Both chicks are in the same nest which is marked C7 on the penguin cam nest map.
Gentoo penguins begin their breeding season during March. It begins with squabbles and flipper slaps as the penguins fight for favoured nest rings and the accompanying pebbles. Egg laying began before Easter and to date 40 eggs have been laid. It has taken a month for the first ones to hatch.
Senior Penguin keeper, Dawn Nicoll said, “We are really happy that the first of the gentoo penguin eggs have hatched. Penguin breeding season is always a really busy time for us, right from the moment we put the nesting rings into the enclosure, through the incubation period, to the hatching, rearing and eventually, the fledging of the chicks. It is always incredibly rewarding when the eggs start hatching and we finally get to see the penguin chicks. The majority of them will hatch over the next two to three weeks as the birds will not all lay at exactly the same time. Fingers crossed, we will have quite a few chicks keeping us busy this season.”
Photo Credit: Royal Zoological Society of Scotland