Monday, September 12, 2011

Happy Feet Missing in Southern Ocean - 12th Sept 2011

Scientists tracking Happy Feet, the wayward penguin who became a worldwide celebrity after washing up on a New Zealand beach, said on Monday they had lost contact with the giant bird.

Researchers said they had received no transmissions since last Friday from a satellite tracking device that was attached to the penguin after he was released into the icy Southern Ocean on Sept 4.

Happy Feet may have been eaten by predators, or the tracking transmitter may have failed or fallen off as the penguin swam in the sub-Antarctic waters where a New Zealand research vessel dropped him off, researchers said.

Colin Miskelly, an animal expert from Wellington's Te Papa museum who advised on Happy Feet's two-month rehabilitation when he was found emaciated and near death in late June, said efforts would continue to relocate the bird. Source