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Child penguin identified washed up in Perth ‘likely died of starvation’

Posted December 06, 2015 13:13:46

A juvenile penguin identified dead in Perth’s Cockburn Sound almost certainly died from starvation, according to the WA Division of Parks and Wildlife.

A member of the public discovered the dead penguin at Naval Base’s Challenger Beach on Friday and reported it to authorities.

Thousands of dead fish have washed up in the area in current weeks but authorities have however to establish what triggered the deaths.

DPAW officers took the penguin to Perth Zoo exactly where employees performed an autopsy.

Senior wildlife officer Rick Dawson stated preliminary benefits indicated the penguin’s death was a all-natural occurrence.

“It is probably a normal event, a single of the young [penguins] that is fledged from the Penguin Island area or Garden Island and hasn’t been in a position to make it, and as a outcome starved,” he stated.

“However it really is been dead for a fair couple of days so even though it looked in tact on the outdoors, it was really very decaying inside.”

“The chances of us getting meaningful benefits from the inside of the penguin, as a result of what it may possibly have eaten, are really remote.”

Photos of the penguin have been shared widely on social media.

The penguin weighed 550 grams, which is about half the typical weight of one particular kilo for a bird of its age.

Mr Dawson mentioned it was widespread for juvenile penguins and other wildlife such as pelicans not to survive their first year.

“Those that have the capabilities to be in a position to hunt and survive in the wild do and these that never unfortunately perish,” he stated.

Mr Dawson stated no adults penguins had washed up dead in the region.

The Department of Fisheries is continuing to investigate what triggered the fish kill but said tests to date pointed to an, as yet, unknown natural occasion.

The public is nevertheless being encouraged to report anything uncommon to authorities.

Subjects: animals, environment, cockburn-5440

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