5 Sep 2011

Happy Feet tracked in Southern Ocean

11:22 am on 5 September 2011

The progress of the emperor penguin released into the Southern Ocean is being tracked via a monitoring device that is sending data every 12 hours.

The penguin dubbed Happy Feet came ashore exhausted and hungry at Peka Peka beach north of Wellington in June and and was nursed back to health at Wellington Zoo.

The bird was released into the water from the NIWA research vessel Tangaroa at 10.30am on Sunday, 49 miles due north of Campbell Island.

He has been fitted with a monitoring device designed by the company Sirtrack.

Spokesperson Kevin Lay, says the data isn't yet showing conclusively which direction Happy Feet is travelling, but as more data is sent the picture will become clearer.