Some information on the Yellow-Eyed Penguin:

The yellow-eyed Penguin is known as Hoiho to Māori, which means 'noise shouter' and refers to their shrill call. It is thought to be the rarest penguin in the world. Hoiho are unique to New Zealand and are one of the most publicised threatened species.

The penguin gains its name from its yellow iris and distinctive yellow headband. It is grey/blue in colour, and has a snow-white belly. Penguin chicks are covered in thick brown, fluffy feathers and do not develop this plumage until they are 14-16 months old.

Some off-site photos:

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The YEP carries a 'Category B' priority for conservation action, and a Department of Conservation Recovery Plan is currently in action.

  • Lifespan: It is a long-lived bird, with some individuals living for 20 years.
  • Size: Adults grow to around 65cm high, and weigh 5-8kg.
  • Diet: Fish such as sprat, red cod, and squid.

The yellow-eyed penguin is the only penguin species that doesn't become tame. It is also the least social of all penguins, and is a solitary breeder. The total number of individual penguins is estimated to range between 5930-6970.

If you're interested in learning more, check out the Department of Conservation or the Kiwi Conservation Club.

The easiest way to help save the yellow-eyed penguin is to buy Mainland cheese.