Inca Tern

With its long white moustache, found on both males and females, and its cackling call, the Inca tern is quite a character. A graceful flier, this seabird hovers over the water until it hones in on a small fish, such as an anchovy, just below the surface of the water. It then swoops down to grab the fish in its bright red bill.

Whiskered Auklet

Whiskered auklets flock together while feeding and both parents carry plankton back in their throat pouches to their young. Nests are located in rocky crevices on ledges that are very difficult for predators such as gulls, falcons, foxes, and rats to reach.

Social structure: Colonies

Rockhopper Penguin

The rockhopper penguin is named for its ability to hop from rock to rock in order to scale a cliff to a safe breeding site. Once a pair has established a territory, the male and female will aggressively defend it from intruders, including other penguins and predators such as birds of prey and rats.

Pigeon Guillemot

Pigeon guillemots are pigeon-sized water birds. Using their wings as paddles and their feet as rudders, they dive more than 150 feet deep to the sea bottom. They use their narrow bills to probe for fish, crabs, and other prey among the vegetation and rocks.

Magellanic Penguin

Magellanic penguins wear the typical black and white tuxedo pattern, which is an adaptation called counter-shading. To prey swimming below, the penguin’s white belly blends in with the sunlight above. To predators swimming above, the penguin’s black back blends in with the dark sea below.

Little Penguin

The smallest of all penguins, little penguins are also called fairy penguins due to their tiny size. Like other penguins, little penguins are designed to swim, not fly. They spend the day foraging for small fish in the shallow waters of the sea close to shore.

King Penguin

The second largest penguin, the king penguin spends most of its time at sea, coming ashore only during the breeding season. Like other penguins, the king penguin cannot fly in the air. However, its streamlined body and paddle-like wings enable it to swim underwater faster than many birds can fly.

Horned Puffin

When a puffin spies a school of small fish such as smelt, it dives through the school and uses its special beak to catch and hold a mouthful of fish. Pointy backward-facing barbs on the roof of its beak and a rough tongue help to hold onto the fish. A puffin can carry up to 60 small fish in its beak at once!

Crested Auklet

Nesting in large colonies makes great breeding grounds for parasites. Crested auklets produce a citrus-like odor that repels parasites. The theory follows that the stronger the odor, the better physical condition the bird is in, and thus, the better mate it will make.

African Penguin

Penguins can’t fly in the air. Underwater, it’s a different story. With a rocket-shaped body and paddle-like wings, penguins fly through the water with ease as they snap up fish, squid, and crustaceans to eat.

Learn more: the Cincinnati Zoo is helping to save African penguins through the support of SANCCOB (the Southern African Foundation for the Conservation of Coastal Birds).