55 Music Concourse Dr.
Golden Gate Park
San Francisco CA
94118
415.379.8000
Regular Hours:

Daily

9:30 am – 5:00 pm

Sunday

11:00 am – 5:00 pm
Members' Hours:

Tuesday

8:30 – 9:30 am

Sunday

10:00 – 11:00 am
Closures
Notices

The Academy will be closed on Thanksgiving and Christmas Day.

Planetarium will be closed Sep. 22, 23, 24

Live Penguin Cams 

February 12, 2013

Pierre is turning 30!

Pierre has had a long and exciting life. He first hatched out at The Maryland Zoo in Baltimore on February 16, 1983. He was donated to Steinhart Aquarium in June of that same year and has been with us ever since. Staying put doesn’t mean that Pierre hasn’t had some adventures throughout his years here. He has lived in three different exhibits in three different buildings during his years at the Academy—the original Steinhart Aquarium building, our temporary Howard Street location, and African Hall in the new Academy—and has had numerous biologists and veterinarians tend to his everyday needs.

As part of the Species Survival Plan we have tracked the number of offspring Pierre has had and which zoos and aquariums most of them have gone off to. In his 30 years, Pierre has had several mates with whom he has produced 16 chicks. His lineage is now represented worldwide, with some of his chicks living as far away as Ohio, Idaho, and even Japan! These offspring have gone on to produce approximately 26 grand chicks and 4 great grand chicks! He is not currently recommended to breed since he is genetically very well represented.

Living to such an old age for an African Penguin means that Pierre has had some health obstacles that penguins in the wild, which have shorter life spans, would not have. He was the first penguin to wear a wetsuit to help him get through a difficult molt, a story immortalized in the children’s book Pierre the Penguin, written by Jean Marzollo and illustrated by Laura Regan. He even has his own Wikipedia page. Pierre has had allergies almost all of his life and gets allergy medication daily to keep him from excessive coughing. Every day, a biologist hides his allergy medication inside a fish, which he gets during one of our daily penguin feedings. Like humans, penguins can develop cataracts with age. Pierre had surgery on both of his eyes to remove cataracts and help improve his vision.

Pierre is doing very well overall and we are excited to see what future adventures he has in store for us. Pierre is banded on the right wing with a solid blue band, so keep an eye out for him when you come to visit or are watching on our web cam!

Pierre the Penguin

Pierre the Penguin


Filed under: CAS Penguin Colony,Individual Penguins,Pierre — admin @ 12:00 am

December 11, 2008

Pierre the Penguin: Pierre’s Wetsuit

This is the wetsuit pattern for the front of Pierre’s neoprene vest.  It was made out of 3mm neoprene material to allow for flexibility and normal movement.  He no longer needs the suit as his feathers have all grown in completely.  The full patterns are published in 2009 Issue, Volume 40 of Drum and Croaker.  Drum and Croaker is a journal for professional aquarium staff and can be viewed online.-Pamela Schaller http://www.columbuszoo.org/drumcroaker/pdf/2009.pdf


Filed under: CAS Penguin Colony,Pierre — Penguins @ 11:24 am

October 31, 2008

Pierre the Penguin

Pierre the Penguin is doing very well and no longer needs to wear a wetsuit (if you don’t know his story, see the link on this web page or search online for “Pierre the Penguin”).  He has claimed a nest with his mate Homey.  African penguins form very strong bonds and mate for life.  Pierre and Homey live in the nest farthest away from the Wide View web cam.  They have the blue wing bands.  Pierre is banded on his right wing and Homey on her left wing.  Together they are exploring the new exhibit, resting in their new territory and spending most of their day cleaning each others feathers.


Filed under: CAS Penguin Colony,Pierre — Penguins @ 4:54 pm