The second macaroni chick of the year had his/her first swim this week! This chick, the offspring of Paulie (dad) and Chaos (mom), was raised in the backup penguin area away from the rest of the colony. Paulie sustained an injury to his beak near the beginning of breeding season. So the pair was pulled off exhibit to allow for some recovery time. While in backup, Chaos laid her egg in the backup! We decided to allowed them to remain off-exhibit to raise their chick since they were already comfortably nesting there.
The chick now has his adult feathers, although a few stubborn downy ones remain on his head and back. Recently it was decided that he was ready to meet the colony. This is easier said than done. While he literally tries to beat down the door in backup, he is meeting a brand new group of penguins and new "world" for the first time.
While he never had to worry with aggression when he was small, he did not have the advantage the other chick did of seeing the other birds each day.
However, unlike the first macaroni chick, this one prefers the land to the water. A quick swim is enough for him! If he continues to acclimate well, he will be left unsupervised next week!