Penguin visits the Topeka Zoo

Recently, a penguin from the Kansas City Zoo made an appearance Thursday, Nov. 8 at the Topeka Zoo. The event started at 6:30 p.m. It was a special treat for everyone visiting the zoo this week. On Thursday, the Conservation Connection at the Topeka Zoo featured a Humboldt penguin, giving information about the penguin and history about its species and other types of penguins. As penguins are struggling to survive, especially with the fish population declining rapidly in certain areas, the staff at the zoo spread awareness about the penguins’ conditions. 

Along with the informative speeches about penguins, the senior director of zoological operations at the Kansas City Zoo, Sean Putney, discussed his most recent trip to Punta San Juan Marine Reserve located in Peru. Kansas City Zoo partners with multiple other accredited zoos to assist in keeping the designation of the reserve under the Peruvian Protected Areas System, as well as keeping the future of the Humboldt penguin in Peru safe. This is important because other conservation areas have lost funding and have had to shut down. In order for them to continue being able to help, they need the information out there to help make people aware of the issues. 

According to the Topeka Zoo’s Facebook page, the Conservation Connection program gave the presentation as a free, live audience discussion about penguin conservation, along with different facts that would interest anyone who likes penguins. It was based on a first come, first serve event, as it was only a one day presentation. For those who missed it, there are recordings that people can watch. Along with those, there are still features being done on different news sources that show highlights about the presentation and other different facts that they added to heighten interest in the presentation and the Kansas City Zoo.  

Dillan Hunter, junior computer science major, was delighted to hear about a penguin at the Topeka Zoo.

“The fact that they brought a live penguin to our local zoo is a great thing, because not only were children able to learn facts about penguins themselves, but adults were able to learn about the conservation efforts that people are trying to do in order to keep the penguin population from declining,” Hunter said. 

Faydra Knox, freshman human services major, was also excited about the event.

“I was really excited about this event, and when I went there. I was riveted by the information that they gave. Penguins are my favorite animal, and to find out that they are having so much trouble surviving in the wild where they belong is quite saddening,” Knox said. “To think that these creatures are suffering is bad, but because of the efforts of conservationists, there is hope that penguins might be able to survive the wild after being reintroduced once their living conditions become better.”