8 Little Blue Penguin Facts for Kids
The Little Blue Penguin is also called a Fairy Penguin or simply Blue Penguin. They are a species of penguin that measure just less than 13 inches tall and weigh about 3 pounds as adults. They are in fact the smallest species of Penguin.
1. They have blue heads with gray beaks. They are also blue down their backs with white bellies. They get their name from their blue markings.
2. They are found in Australia and in New Zealand and have also been sighted in Tasmania and Chile. They live in colonies and have a very well ordered social structure. They mate for life. Each pair tends to their own burrow within the colony but remain social with the rest of the colony.
3. They are fast swimmers (at about 1.5 mph).They travel a great deal everyday sometimes as much as 82 kilometers.
4. They are very small penguins so it does not take a lot of food to sustain them. Their diet consists of whatever marine life they can get a hold of but mostly krill, shrimp and other small marine life. They will dive in shallow water to catch their meal.
5. They will also eat whatever they find on the shore. Although they are amazing swimmers they seem to enjoy their time on shore more so if they can find food on shore they will eat it before having to go and look for some in the ocean.
6. Blue Penguins breed once a year but the female has two eggs at once and in some cases during the same season will lay two more. The chicks are incubated and hatched than encouraged to leave the nest by the time they reach 80 days old.
7. Both males and females tend to the young. The breeding pair follows similar rituals that other penguin species follow. The male has to woo the female into becoming his partner. While they do mate for life there has been some evidence that if one partner dies the remaining partner will look for a new mate.
8. They do not breed until they are three and the life span in the wild is not very long (usually 6 years) some scientist feel that they may be in danger of not being able to keep the population up because they only have actually 2 years of breeding time. In captivity they live up to 20 years.