Welcome, Odern!

There’s a new penguin on the beach at Perth Zoo!

Odern, whose name is a Noongar word meaning ‘the sea’, was rescued and hand-raised by our colleagues at the Parks and Wildlife Service, before coming to live with the colony at Perth Zoo.

Now thriving in his home, Odern plays an important role as an ambassador animal and helps to raise awareness for his species in the wild.

Senior Zoo Keeper, Kerry Pickles, said: “We are very pleased that Odern has settled in with the rest of our Little Penguin colony.

“It’s really important that our visitors develop an appreciation for this species – that connection helps inspire people to make changes that can help penguin populations in the wild.”

Perth Zoo is home to a healthy colony of Little Penguins who are each closely monitored to ensure they stay in tip top shape. In fact, our dedicated keepers have recently devised a creative way to keep track of their health without unnecessary handling or stress.

A handmade weighing bridge allows the penguins the choice to walk across without even realising they’re having a check-up.

“A big part of being a good zookeeper is developing trusting relationships with your animals, and that’s why it’s important we reduce potential stressors wherever we can,” Kerry said.

“We don’t want to overhandle the birds and have them become wary of us, so it’s great to see the bridge has been very well received.

“They’ll quite happily waddle across by themselves and we’re able to monitor their weight and look underneath their feet without handling at all.”

A win for wildlife and welfare!

Love the Little Penguins? Catch our colony eating a delicious fishy treat each day at the free keeper talk. This runs daily at 11.15am.
Small changes to make a big impact for Little Penguins in the wild:

  • Be a responsible beach user
  • Always put unwanted fishing line, nets and other rubbish in the bin
  • Keep your dog on a leash when visiting beach areas and known nesting sites