Sphenisco - Chilean Penguin Charity
Protecting important habitats
The wild-living population of the Humboldt Penguins on the coast of Chile and Peru is threatened by a wide range of factor including:
- Decline in the fish population, from overfishing and climate change
- Marine pollution
- Fishing with gillnets (discard/by-catch)
- Illegal harvesting of guano
- Illegal removal of eggs or living animals (for consumption, as mascots)
- Disruption of breeding activities through tourism
The Sphenisco project aims to prevent the extinction of the Humboldt Penguins in Chile and Peru. Their primary focus is the protection of breeding colonies and the surrounding marine areas.
For Sphenisco, it is important to get the local population on board with nature and species protection. This includes educating local businesses and people with how they can best support the conservation of penguins in their every day lives.
They also encourage and financially support in-situ research projects that support Humboldt penguin rescue and rehabilitation in Chile.
In 2016 the team of animal keepers and generous visitors managed to raise over £3,000 for the Punta San Juan Project, read more about it here.
In 2017 the Animal Encounters team, with the help of our warm-hearted visitors, managed to raise just over £1,200 for the projects run by the Humboldt penguin charity Sphenisco.