Sign in to follow this  
matty_o_911

25 penguins die at Sea World

14 posts in this topic

25 penguins die at Sea World Brian Williams March 13, 2007 11:00pm GOLD Coast attraction Sea World has lost one of its prized attractions with the deaths of 25 of its 37 fairy penguins. The birds started dying on Thursday, leading to fears they may have been infected with avian bird flu. This was ruled out last night by the newly established Biosecurity Queensland, which has been conducting tests. Sea World's manager of marine sciences Steve McCourt last night said he suspected the deaths were caused by a load of contaminated gravel that had been placed in the bird's enclosure as part of three-monthly maintenance. "All the staff here are absolutely devastated about this," Mr McCourt said. "We think there is some sort of toxin in the gravel." Sea World first took samples to a private laboratory and then called in Biosecurity, which worked on Monday night to clear up fears of bird flu. Mr McCourt declined to say from where the gravel came. Biosecurity Queensland principal veterinary officer Ian Douglas said tests for bird flu were negative. "It's a bit too early to speculate what's happened," he said. "But in the veterinary world, it's not unusual to get a large number of animals affected at the one time. If one is exposed to a toxin then often they all are and you get large crashes." Dr Douglas said he had never seen a similar occurrence with penguins. The display has been closed and the remaining penguins are in quarantine. Mr McCourt said the 12 surviving birds were of mixed sex and, with the species being a prolific breeder, this would be sufficient for numbers to recover. "We've had the penguins here for over 20 years and never had any issues before," he said. "Our primary focus is on the remaining birds and the welfare of some very upset staff. The enclosure has been completely stripped and we're confident the situation has passed." Dr Douglas said it might take two or more weeks to determine what had killed the birds. "It's a bit of detective work. We've got to look at the damage and go through a diagnostic process." Sea World's original salt water public swimming pool was turned into a Penguins on Parade exhibit about two decades ago. http://www.news.com.au/couriermail/story/0...725-952,00.html
This is really such a shame. And of all the things in the world to be killed by - gravel. Edited by matty_o_911

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Thats crap! Just like they said in the article, it only takes on bird to get sick and the rest will be affected, no matter what, unless you isolate the bird when u notice symptoms... awww thats horrible. Will they be breeding them to repopulate?
Or will they bring in some more from somewhere else?? They can't let them breed with just the 12 can they?? There needs to be more of a gene pool? Corect? Or is the 12 enough??

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This made news headlines for thw radio station 3AW, down In melbourne. I'm not sure if it's called the same thing in other states, but yer it was said!

And of all the things in the world to be killed by - gravel.
LoL!!! I can see yer point. But on a serious note, what type of chemical could have kiled these poor things? CoAsTeRbOy8

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Wait a minute - to harken back to political correctness of a few months ago, aren't we calling them "Little Penguins" now? As far as what kind of chemical... geez... I don't know - a chemical used in the water to clean the gravel prior to being sold commercially? a detergent? Maybe some sort of galvanising agent that was in the metal containers used to move the gravel around? Lets keep in mind the folks who look after these little guys... remember the upset after one of the polar bears was put down? same problem - except this time we may also have some maintenance workers affected by this as well - imagine if you were one of the guys who loaded that gravel into the pen? you were poisoning the environment that those little guys were living in.... Sure its a shame that the penguins died, but this kind of thing can happen without due care being taken, and by the looks of things, since contamination most likely occurred before sea world took ownership of the gravel, there may be a case here for the park against the supplier. Cest La Vie.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It made headlines in Canberra's 2CC/ 2CA Radio station in the afternoon, as-well as 2UE in Sydney. You could just hear in Trevor Longs voice on how he felt about the situation.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Or will they bring in some more from somewhere else?? They can't let them breed with just the 12 can they?? There needs to be more of a gene pool? Corect? Or is the 12 enough??
I would have thought that considering they have an obvious problem that effected a large batch of penguins that they would look to broaden the gene pool. Maybe by introducing one or two. They will probably just repopulate with what they have now.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The chemical could of been anything. I could of even been a virus as such, for example like white spot, only this occurs in fish lol. Where is the gravel actually from? Who knows what the source was... for all we know their could of been a substance spilt when the pebbles were being cleaned and it could of become unnoticed. As Alex said it could of been something in the water. It may not of been aged or purified properly before cleaning resulting in chlorine to still be left on them. Its going to take allot to get the numbers back up, its not just as simple as oh stick 2 different sexes together and let them mate. They need to build close relationships, become dependent on each other and then successfully give birth... its a long process. There not like rabbits lol. Oh just one more thing... why has the forum gone so quiet?

Edited by mickey_079

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Charcoal penguin anyone? I'll have a quarter penguin and chips thanks. "The Bus is now leaving for Charcoal Burners Bluff, Tasmania"

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  

  • Parkz Crew

    Support Parkz... join the Crew for:

    • Ad-banner free viewing
    • Parkz Crew profile badge
    • Extended editing
    • See who's liked your posts
    • Purchase discounts

    Join Now from $20/yr

  • Recently Browsing

    No registered users viewing this page.