Durden Update: The Coast of Brazil

Dear Caz

My friends and I have finally reached the coast of Brazil, and we are having
a great time. It was a long journey, but well worth it. On our way up we stopped
off in an old abandoned lighthouse which we found on a deserted island near Puerto
Deseado. I attach photos of my friends resting and playing in the lighthouse

The water here in Brazil is lovely and warm, and there is lots of sunshine. Its
a lovely place to enjoy vacations, for penguins and for people. I would love
to say “Wish you were here”, but since we are penguins and you are human, we
wouldn’t see you even if you were here.

Lots of humans come to Brazil to enjoy vacations on the beach because of the
lovely weather, but we don’t go near the beaches. We stay out in the open water,
or use deserted islands well away from the coast. Most of the people who live
in Brazil have never seen a penguin. That is because there are no penguins actually
living in Brazil, only visitors like us, who never come close to the land. The
only time any of us ever go ashore is if we get sick, or oiled.

At the moment there are hundreds of thousands of penguins enjoying themselves
along the coast of Brazil, not just Magellanic penguins like us, but also Rockhopper
and Macaroni penguins. There are penguins that like really hot weather, and they
live in South Africa, Australia and the Galapagos Islands. There are also penguins
that like very cold weather, and they live in Antarctica where it is very cold,
with lots of snow and ice.

At our web site www.penguins.cl/penguins-region.htm you will find an interactive
map showing where all the different penguins live. If you click on each location
on the map you will be shown a list of the penguins that live in each part of
the world.

We are Magellanic penguins, and we like a mild climate; not too hot and not too
cold. Brazil would be far too hot for us in summer, but it’s just right at the
moment. We are now coming into our winter because we live in the southern half
of the world, but you will be coming into your summer if you live in the northern
half (northern hemisphere).

It is really great here getting to meet different species of penguins from different
parts of the world, all gathered together to enjoy a few weeks of vacation time.
The funniest penguins here are called Rockhoppers. They get that name because
they hop like frogs instead of walking. They also have funny yellow eye-brows.
You can see how they hop instead of walk on one of our videos on YouTube at
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rOeqFlnn0JU

When we are home at the nest we eat fish called Sprats, but here in Brazil we
have lots of different fish to eat. We will spend about two months here before
returning home. We usually plan to arrive back home during October, ready to
lay eggs in early November. I hope our nest is not getting damaged by the winter
storms whilst we are away. I always worry about leaving the nest for long periods
in case it gets damaged. If it does get damaged we will have lots of work to
do repairing it.

But that is still a long way off. We have only just got here, and there is lots
to do before thinking about going back to repair nests and raise more chicks.
I will write to you again when we are ready to begin our long journey back to
the nest.

Lots of love from Durden

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