Today was MUCH more fun... Assigned to Pen 3 with Craig, Mark and Amy...Penguin pen! These are the little guys that are almost ready for release so can be a bit feisty. We had some of the perm staff doing some checks on their feathers and feet while we were feeding them and giving them their meds.
There was this 1 poor little hunchback guy we nicknamed Granddad, only to find out he was going to be euthanised as he had scoliosis of the spine and it wasn't fair to keep him alive :-( Amy and I wanted to save him, he was proper chilled out and doesn't even care he looks funny! Rule number one: don't get attached and give them nicknames...
I got to handle them again though, yay, it was only picking them up and passing them to Amy and Craig for feeding but still, it's penguin time! Then of course they got to go for their 1 hour swim in the pool.
As it was a Tuesday there were loads of volunteers around so while the Pen 3 boys were doing their thing in the pool we had to go looking for more jobs, helping clean Pen 10 ( I don't think I'll ever have a day here without bird poop), fixing release boxes (spiders), hanging out about 101 towels to dry in the sun (flies). Round One of getting the penguins out the pool was much easier than the fiasco with the Gulls and Cormorants the other day. Round Two? Not so easy... But before Round Two there was more feeding, more checking and then we leave them alone for a bit! So much attention, they must be sick of the sight of us.
They had a new penguin chick hatch in the CRU last Wednesday, so we went to go and watch him be fed. He's so tiny and fits in the palm of your hand. As we weren't allowed in Becky, one of the CRU Interns, held him up at the window and it was like a scene from The Lion King. It was an emotional moment.
Burst water pipe in the afternoon meant our usual pool for the Pen 3 boys 2nd swim was out of use, we had to herd and march them to another one which was adorable to watch. I'm definitely filming next time... This little line of blues and juveniles, and one adult leading the way. So there they were having yet another swim and we stopped for lunch. God, I need a tan!!! Whilst thinking about my pasty skin I bumped into Rocky, the ambassador rockhopper penguin for the centre. She's the trained bird they take for educational talks etc. And there she was just casually sat in the foyer, on her mini surfboard, pooping away looking rather proud of herself. These birds...
Time for Round Two of operation "Get Pen 3 boys back"...absolute disaster. We were a man down so our herding wasn't as effective. Every time we got a couple in, we'd turn to get the stragglers, only for the others to then waddle out to see what was going on and all head to freedom. We won in the end though, after fits of laughter and Mark coming back to help us. Nice try boys!
After work we decided to have some much needed drinks at the Blue Peter, in Big Bay. Peter drove and a couple of us sat in the back of his pick up truck. That was an experience...I survived :-) When we got to Big Bay I noticed he wasn't wearing shoes, apparently he just doesn't. But what about diseases? Or glass? ...or diseased glass??