Some good news to lift spirits in Australia and the world during COVID-19 related shutdowns and other travel restrictions. Travel, hospitality and entertainment website Time Out Melbourne explained:
It’s a rite of passage for most visitors to Melbourne – make the two-hour drive down to Phillip Island and see Australia’s largest colony of friendly, frolicking fairy penguins.
[…]lucky for us, Phillip Island Nature Parks is making sure we can see those scurrying little creatures from home.
Their pun tagline ‘It’s a peng-win’ has several associations. Peng can mean: a mythical Chinese bird; an abbreviation for penguin; or Jamaican slang for high-quality marijuana.
People from around the globe looked forward to watching. Australia’s ambassador to Cyprus was one of them:
How can you not love 🐧? Every sunset, more than 3,000 Little Penguins waddle up to their beach homes on Phillip Island 🇦🇺. @PhillipIslandNP will live stream the daily #PenguinParade at 1100am 🇨🇾 time from 25 Aug. Check out FB/YouTube below https://t.co/XTMejMt7td
— Australia In Cyprus (@AusHCCyprus) August 24, 2020
Lisa Simpson hoped to join in from London:
— Lisa Simpson (@lisajaynegeyer) August 24, 2020
Jag Bani, a Punjabi language newspaper in India, shared this with its Twitter followers:
— Jagbani (@JagbaniOnline) August 27, 2020
Australia: 770 thousand people worldwide watch ‘Penguin Parade’ online
The presenter gives a running commentary, explaining aspects such as the Little Penguin being the smallest species. It is also known as the Fairy Penguin. Questions could also be posed in comments on the livestreams. Thousands have obliged. Waddling has been a popular topic.
In May, BBC sports commentator Andrew Cotter had created this send-up:
Anyway, it was high tide when the penguins landed at the Phillip Island Nature Parks’ viewing area when the photo at the top was taken. It was during the second sunset livestream at 18:00 EST or 07:00 UTC. The visitor centre is currently closed due to lockdowns in the State of Victoria.
Thanks to everyone who tuned into our big launch night of Live Penguin TV! We had over 771,000 viewers last night from across the world. If you missed out or tuned in late, not to worry because we're back again tonight! 6pm AEST on Facebook or YouTube 🐧😁 #LivePenguinTV pic.twitter.com/o0RlGfCmx6
— Phillip Island Nature Parks (@PhillipIslandNP) August 26, 2020
Over one million viewers tuned in on the first two nights. 602 penguins crossed the beach on the second night. Yes, someone has the job of counting them.
You can also watch a recording of the event: