Summer is a perfect time to pay a visit to the Little Penguins on Phillip Island. The next few months will see chicks hatching in the nests and parents heading out to sea to fill their bellies with food for the whole family.
The largest colony of this species of penguin – commonly called Little Penguin – nest on Phillip Island. The penguins nest underground to stay out of the summer sun and out of sight of potential predators such as birds of prey that circle above the coastal cliffs and dunes.
When there’s eggs in the nest, one parent has to stay with the eggs while the other parent goes to sea to fish for themselves and their partner. Once the eggs hatch, the routine is the same, parents will take turns caring for the chicks in the nest while the other goes for food.
Little penguins can eat about 25% of their body weight daily, and they feast on a diet of small fish such as Barracouta, Anchovies, Red Cod, Pilchards and squid. So expect to see some heavy looking penguins returning from the ocean over the next few months!
The best place to watch this is of course the Penguin Parade which we visit on tour. We arrive at the parade in the evenings and you can sit at the beach waiting for the penguins to arrive. When they arrive, they waddle across the sand and through the sand dunes, all the way back to their burrows to regurgitate dinner for their family!