The Real Chicks of Central Park

Central Park Zoo

Papa Penguin

Papa Penguin

Penguin parenting comes easily to senior wild animal keeper Juan Romero, who's raised kids of his own, and is used to putting in long hours to clean and feed (and cuddle) his little ones. When the chicks first hatched, he recommended a series of names: Juan, Juanita, Juana…you get the idea. But Papa Penguin is the first to admit these birds aren't pets—they're wild animals, and the greatest satisfaction for this proud papa has been watching them grow up, and find their places in the colony.

Chick Flick

Finding Their Way

Finding Their Way

by Papa Penguin

I'll be honest: It was a little nerve-wracking. We worked so hard to raise these chicks and make sure that they would integrate with the rest of the colony. And they did! But, like my colleague says here, the day we watched the chicks go out on exhibit was a lot like sending the kids off to their first day of school.

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Chick Lit

Everybody Poops

Everybody Poops

by Papa Penguin

Five meals a day. About 75 grams each. And that's not the size of the meal I'm talking about—it's the size of the chicks, right after they hatch. Every day, we feed our growing baby birds 10% of their body weight, a combo of formula "fish shakes" and filleted herring. Where do you think it all goes?

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Chick Flick

How to Foster a Penguin

How to Foster a Penguin

by Papa Penguin

Turns out raising a penguin chick is a lot like raising a human baby. Find out why in this behind-the-scenes tour of the penguin nursery that I narrated.

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