Our outstanding local zoo is busy building a penguin habitat that will hopefully be ready for our new, flightless arrivals by summer this year.
Are there penguins in El Paso?
In summer? Has the zoo really thought about this?
Luckily they have. It turns out that these will not be penguins from the South Pole.
They will not be penguins from the North Pole, since those do not exist. Instead, they will be a species called “Magellan penguins” that are native to Chile and Argentina and are better suited to hotter desert climates.
I know that when I think of South America, I usually picture the Amazon jungle or the Rio de Janeiro Festival. The southernmost point of the continent can have a lot of colds.
These Megallanic penguins still look like what you think of when you picture a penguin. There’s the “classic” penguin, the Emperor, who looks like this:
Take a look at those fancy looking bastards. The Magellanics look similar, but are around a foot and a half shorter and have a more scruffy looking “tuxedo”.
Hey. Close enough.
Furthermore, this variety of ‘hyphen It’s in “Endangered Species” list. So the hope is that the initial twelve colonies will reproduce and grow. Here is a video from early 2022 of the groundbreaking ceremony.
So this breed of penguin will be relatively comfortable in the El Paso desert during the summer.
They will be able to swim in cold water and even go inside if they need a fix of air conditioning.
I shouldn’t have to say this part, but… please don’t sneak into the habitat and feed the penguins Flamin’ Hot Cheetos, okay, El Paso?
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