Penguins make a splash at Sea Life Centre

Meet the little fellas causing a splash in the West Midlands – a colony of penguins that has travelled all the way from the other side of the world.

The 12 Gentoo penguins have come from the Kelly Tarlton Aquarium in New Zealand and will become the latest addition to the Ice Adventure attraction at Birmingham’s National Sea Life Centre. 

Visitors will be able to come face-to-face with them from April 7.

Looking after the penguins are 31-year-old Naomi Bird and Eve Mansfield, 23. 

Miss Bird said: “This project has been in the making for the last five years and it is really exciting that now we are able to launch it because it will be as if people are in the Antarctic with cold temperatures.

“The penguins are a near-threatened species and we want to preserve the breed because their biggest predator is climate change. I have only been at the centre for three months so I am really looking forward to getting stuck in and working with these amazing creatures.” 

The birds, aged between one and 12, are currently adjusting to life in the UK after an 11,000-mile trip. 

They are being fed a diet of herring and spat, a mixture of fish, by their new keepers and will go on show next month. There will be multiple viewing platforms as well as an iced environment.

Miss Mansfield said: “Gentoos are the fastest swimming penguin and the third largest. They are very monogomous and are seen to be a bit more romantic than other birds” 

As well as the Gentoo colony, the attraction will also feature the cold water-loving lumpsucker fish.

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