Humbolt Penguin

Scientific name:  Spheniscus humboldti
Class:  Birds
Continent:  South America
Habitat:  Rocky shorelines
Diet:  Carnivorous
Weight:  3.3 - 5 kg
Size:  56 - 70 cm

The Humboldt penguin is named after the strip of water it swims in, the Humboldt Current, which provides a rich harvest of squid, krill and small schooling fish, the staple diet of the penguin. They are found along the rather temperate coast of Chile and Peru, unlike their colder climate relatives.

These birds are monogamous, and both adults will share responsibility for nest building and chick rearing. Hatching after an incubation period of 40 days, chicks usually leave the nest at around 12 weeks old. 

Humboldt penguins have been known to live up to around 30 years old in captivity, which is far longer than in the wild.

They are listed as Vulnerable, and face a number of threats in the wild, including hunting, predation, food shortage due to human over-hunting and human damage to their habitat.

We're home to 11 playful penguins - click here to meet them and find out about their personalities!

Love our Penguins? You may be interested in our VIP Penguin Feeding Experience

Conservation status
Extinct in the wild
Critically endangered
Near threatened
Least concern
Insufficient data
Not evaluated


Penguins don't have teeth but the inside of their beak and tongue is covered in spines to help them catch their fish.
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