Penguins take first weekend walk of 2019 at the Calgary Zoo
Penguins paraded through the Calgary Zoo on Saturday, a chance to stretch their legs on the first weekend walk of 2019.
It’s the seventh year of the Penguin Walk in which the king colony does a 10 to 15 minute loop around the zoo at 11 a.m., if the weather permits. If it’s above 5 C or below -25 C, or winds exceed 20 km/h, the walk will be cancelled.
As about 15 birds — each with the name of royalty, per their species — waddle through the grounds with zookeepers and volunteers, it looks like a penguin parade, said Trish Exton-Parder with the zoo.
“When it’s absolutely perfect, these guys go out and they have a ball and there is not one face in the crowd without a big smile,” she said. “It’s really quite something to watch.
“Some of them are a little slower than others, but the keeper talks to the audience, they have an interpreter there [and] fish to get them a little excited about the rewards at the end of the walk.”
To tackle climate change and impact the environments of species like the penguins, the zoo is challenging people to turn their thermostats down by one degree to lower energy consumption.
“[The walk is] quite something that will take a little bit of stress away from you, because it’s nothing but wonderful to watch and a neat message for the environment at the end of the day,” Exton-Parder said.
When it’s time to walk, the penguins are pumped.
“Just like your dog, when it hears the word ‘W-A-L-K,’ you know that they’re ready to go out the door,” Exton-Parder said. “Same thing with penguins; they’re very smart birds.”
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