Woburn Safari Park welcomes birth of two rare Humboldt penguin chicks

  • Watch footage of the penguin chicks in the park

A safari park has welcomed two penguin chicks which are considered to be at high risk of extinction in the wild.

The Humboldt chicks, named Wasabi and Sprout, hatched in April at Woburn Safari Park in Bedfordshire.

They were born to parents Leaf and Salsa in April who have raised a number of chicks at the safari park as part of a European breeding programme.

Humboldt penguins are listed as "vulnerable" on the International Union for Conservation of Nature Red List.

Keeper Lily has been watching over the growing brood.

"From the very beginning both chicks looked really happy and healthy and very vocal. You could hear them calling from the nest all day," she said.

The population of Humboldt penguins is in decline. Credit: Woburn Safari Park

"They're just starting to emerge from their burrows now, and will have their distinctive brown-ish grey colouration for the first year or so, so visitors should be able to tell them apart from the black and white adults."

In the wild, Humboldt penguins reside in South America and nest on islands and rocky coasts.

According to the International Union for Conservation of Nature, the population of Humboldt penguins stands at around 23,800 and is in decline.

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