Friday, May 21, 2010

Tawaki - Fiordland Crested Penguin

This handsome chap is a Fiordland Crested Penguin, known also as the "Tawaki". He can be found along the Fiordland coast and on Steward Island. Although they forage in the ocean for squid, crustaceans and tasty fish, they head inland to make their nests in temperate, coastal rainforest. The form monogamous pairs, although sometimes will nest in groups, nesting under overhangs, in caves, or under tree roots. Although they lay two eggs, generally only the first one hatches, and even if two chicks do break free, there is a day or two between them in age and the younger usually fails to compete with its sibling for food and dies. The male guards the chickat first, whilst the female feeds it, but after a few weeks the chicks are creched together and both parents forage. These birds are quite shy and among the rarest of our mainland penguins.

This fellow is my second "Official" postcrossing postcard (which means to say that the recepient ahs been chosen randomly before sending) that I have made by hand. This time I did not make it because I wanted to "conquer" the country (it's headed for the US), but because I really felt the lady would appreciate it. I am looking forward to her response!

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