In an unexpected twist at New Zealand’s Wellington National Airport, flight operations were momentarily disrupted when a small blue penguin, locally known as a Korora, was spotted on the runway just before takeoff on January 12. The delightful incident unfolded when an Air Chathams pilot noticed the unusual visitor, prompting swift action from airport staff to ensure the safety of the feathered traveler.
According to reports from the New York Post, the pilot and passengers patiently waited as airport staff raced to collect and assist the tiny penguin. Wellington Airport shared the charming episode on Instagram, stating, “Found on the runway: a very unusual little visitor! A pilot was about to take off on January 12th when they spotted this little korora (blue penguin).” The airport humorously noted that the runway sensors recorded a temperature of 50 degrees at the time, explaining the penguin’s reluctance to leave the area.
The penguin was then taken to The Nest at Wellington Zoo for recovery. The airport not only ensured the penguin’s well-being but also implemented measures to prevent such escapades in the future. “We’ve done some penguin proofing to our fences to keep our flippered friends out of trouble in the future,” mentioned the airport in its Instagram post.
According to Jack Howarth, Wellington Airport’s Wildlife Officer, the penguin, believed to be just six weeks old, appeared to be in a “less-than-impressed mood.” Concerns were raised about its exposure to the sun without shelter. Wellington Zoo reported that despite being thin and slightly underweight, the fledgling penguin was otherwise in good health.
Since its discovery, the adorable penguin has undergone blood tests, x-rays, and a nutritious diet featuring fish to aid in gaining weight. The spokesperson for Wellington Zoo revealed that the korora’s adult feathers have already grown in, and the team plans to release it back into the wild in a few weeks, once the feathers are waterproof.
The heartwarming tale of the unexpected airport visitor has captivated social media, with the resilient penguin becoming a symbol of unexpected charm in the midst of travel disruptions. As aviation enthusiasts and animal lovers alike celebrate the successful rescue, the delightful images of the penguin’s adventure continue to circulate, bringing smiles to online audiences.
Sources By Agencies