On Wednesday (Feb. 11), Saint Stephen’s students and faculty were treated to a visit from Kirby and Curry, two African penguins who traveled to campus with their keepers from Busch Gardens in Tampa. Middle School science teacher Dr. Paul Suprenand, who holds a Ph.D from the University of South Florida’s College of Marine Science, helped arrange the visit. Students lined the walkways from the Middle School to the Turner Upper School building while the inquisitive penguins waddled their way through the crowd for about 30 minutes. We learned that most penguin species actually prefer warm climates and water temperatures between 40 and 70 degrees. Nearly all penguins live in the Southern Hemisphere. Busch Gardens features a colony of African Penguins (native to the rocky shores of southern Africa) at its Penguin Point habitat. Kirby and Curry were born and raised in captivity. In the wild, African penguins can swim at speeds of more than 12 mph and dive up to 400 feet to catch their prey: small fish, squid, and crustaceans. To view more photos from the visit, link to our Facebook community.
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