The world’s smallest species of penguin is known simply as the “little penguin.” They’re absolutely adorable, barely more than a foot tall and weighing only about 3 pounds. They’re also known as the “little blue penguin” because their plumage has a distinctive slate-gray color. While you might associate penguins with Antarctica, the little penguin’s natural habitat stretches across the southern coasts of Australia and New Zealand. Their awkward gait on land is comical but once a little penguin is in the water, it becomes incredibly graceful, “flying” underwater looking for something tasty (typically fish, squid, or a crustacean).
One of the residents of the Cincinnati Zoo is a little penguin named Cookie. He’s surprisingly friendly with people and serves as the mascot for the zoo’s Bird House. They take excellent care of him, but he nevertheless suffers from “bumblefoot.” It’s a bacterial infection that’s common in penguins that live at zoos or aquariums. Cookie gets new dressings on his feet every day and that helps a lot. As one staff member puts it, “We have to change his socks every day.”
The video posted below will give you a little glimpse of what goes on behind the scenes at the Cincinnati Zoo. Cookie is indoors waiting to get the day’s fresh “socks.” He wanders around aimlessly and occasionally shaking his tail in classic penguin fashion. Someone gently encourages him to waddle over to another room. When he sees his favorite caregiver, Cookie goes completely bonkers. You’ll have to see it to believe it, but his display of enthusiasm may well be the cutest thing ever.
We don’t really know, but it’s a good guess that Cookie always greets his best friend with this wonderfully over-the-top display of affection. The zoo staffer who made the video seemed happy to be able to say, “I finally got that on tape.”
How did you like this miniature penguin’s reaction to his favorite person? We’d love to hear from you in the comments at Facebook. Be sure to like and share: this video could make anyone’s day!