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Painting with Penguins to celebrate World Penguin Day

  • Saturday 24th April 2021
  • Penguins

SLKTA Pebble Art 2

Ahead of World Penguin Day this Sunday, our Penguin Keepers are pleased to announce they’re donating $3,000 to three non-profit organisations that help protect penguins in the wild.

Over the past year, our crafty keepers have been creating art with the help of the King and Gentoo penguins and selling their wares in the Aquarium’s retail store.


The team has collected black pebbles – which the Gentoo penguins have previously used to make nests – to create miniature works of pebble art, often using the birds’ discarded tail feathers as paintbrushes. Our keepers have also framed paintings that have been created by some of the more artistically inclined penguins by waddling through a puddle of non-toxic paint and then waddling over strategically placed cardboard.

Penguin Feet Art 2

As the home of New Zealand’s only colony of sub-Antarctic penguins, our team of Penguin Keepers at SEA LIFE Kelly Tarlton’s are showing their support for the incredible work that goes into the protection and conservation of local penguin species in the wild by giving 100% of the funds raised through the penguin art project to Wildlife Hospital, Penguin Rescue and NZ Bird Rescue Charitable Trust.

SLKT Christmas Pebbles

“We are truly happy to be in a position to donate to three non-profit organisations, which are doing amazing work to protect New Zealand’s penguin populations. Our team is passionate about penguins and we’ve had so much fun creating our art over the last year. It’s awesome to be able to raise awareness about the problems that New Zealand’s wild penguins are facing and doing it in a fun way. The King and Gentoo penguins here at the Aquarium are ambassadors for their species, helping us inspire our visitors to learn more about these magnificent creatures and find out how we can help protect them and our local penguin species in the wild,” said Kristen Buckley, Penguin Keeper at SEA LIFE Kelly Tarlton’s.

Photo 15 04 21, 16 40 08

“Penguin Rescue is very grateful for the financial support from SEA LIFE Kelly Tarlton’s. It helps us fund diagnostic work with wild penguins. We are able to create slides of blood and check them for disease or parasites.” said Rosalie Goldsworthy from Penguin Rescue. 

Photo 15 04 21, 16 32 12

View video here:

SLKTA Pebble Art 1