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Penguins to make Shanghai debut

TWENTY Magellanic penguins will make their public debut at Shanghai Wildlife Park early next month, the first time the species has been in the city.

The birds left Argentina on April 13 and are now in quarantine at the park, officials said today.

The mature penguins - 10 male and 10 female - are expected to reproduce in the park.

When they first reached Shanghai, the penguins were timid and scared, refusing any food.

Some bold penguins started eating a day later, and the others finally calmed down two to three days later. Carers now feed them with vitamin-added yellow croaker.

The park has built a new penguin enclosure of 900 square meters for them. The enclosure includes a pool, shoals and rockeries for them to play.

The inner part of the area, such as a lair and a "delivery room," will have the temperature regulated to between 10 and 20 degrees Celsius.
The penguins will move into the new home after the quarantine period, said the park.

Magellanic penguins usually live in coastal areas of Argentina, Chile and Falkland Islands. They were named after Ferdinand Magellan who discovered them when he sailed to South America in 1519. They are now on the Red List of the International Union for Conservation of Nature.


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