It's a triple African penguin birthday week (and it's doubly cute, because they're family)! Peri and Annuli turned 7 yesterday (18 Feb) and Quinn turns 7 tomorrow (20 Feb). Triple 7's - that's a lucky sign!
Peri hatched at the Two Oceans Aquarium on 18 Feb 2014, to parents Dorris and Faraday who were actually in the first group of penguins to arrive at the Aquarium. Sadly, Faraday passed away last year, but Peri still shares the beach with his mom, Dorris, and his brother Tasmyn. Peri is a proud, handsome bird (Editor's note: Keeper Shanet says they are all handsome birds), and can always be seen walking around the exhibit holding his head up high, trying to look taller than all the other males. He's also a very clean penguin, rarely getting dirt smudges on his chest like the other penguins, and is easily identified by his bold spot pattern.
Despite an enormous appetite, Peri has very good manners at the feed bucket and takes fish politely from the hands of his keepers, that said, he has no qualms about forcing his way to the front of the queue to show his dominance over the other penguins. He's a very curious bird and is well-known for investigating vacant nests for himself and Quinn, who do not have a nest for themselves yet.
What are some of his quirks? Peri is not a very interactive bird and doesn't like being touched by his keepers. He seems to have a weird sense of humour and sometime he will randomly decide to chase another penguin around the beach all day, or he will just collect loose feathers in his beak and keep them there for no particular reason.
Quinn comes from a big penguin family! Her parents, Chuck (one of the original penguins that arrived at the Aquarium together with Peri's parents) and Labamba (who came to us from uShaka Sea World) are both still with us, as are her many siblings - Ayah and Annuli at the Aquarium, and Morgan who lives at SANCCOB in Table View.
As anyone who grows up with lots of siblings can tell you - there ain't no time for manners, and Quinn is not as polite at the feeding bucket as her mate Peri. She takes after her father, Chuck, at the feeding bucket - as soon as she gets a fish she will take it and run away from the other penguins and go eat by herself.
Quinn has unusually few spots on her chest compared to other African penguins - just two - which makes her easy to identify! This little madam does not like humans at all and will not think twice about snapping at you if you don't keep those juicy-looking fingers tucked away! She is very protective of Peri, and the two of them have been a couple since pairing up in 2017 - although no chicks yet!
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