Metro Richmond Zoo’s African penguin celebrates 43rd birthday

The zoo says ET is the world’s oldest African penguin!
Published: Jan. 31, 2023 at 10:55 AM EST|Updated: Jan. 31, 2023 at 4:31 PM EST
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CHESTERFIELD, Va. (WWBT) - The Metro Richmond Zoo recently celebrated the birthday of one of its female African penguins!

The zoo says, ET, turned 43 on Jan. 28, and is the world’s oldest penguin!

“According to our best available data, ET is the oldest currently living African penguin in the world and the oldest African penguin to have ever lived,” the zoo said.

ET arrived at the Metro Richmond Zoo in 1995 and has been an integral member of the zoo’s penguin colony.

“ET is in good health considering her age. Like most elderly penguins, she has arthritis for which she receives medication. She also has impaired vision, but her quality of life is strong. She eats well and still loves to swim. ET is a favorite of our staff and guests, and she receives lots of love and care,” the zoo said.

The average lifespan of an African penguin is around 15-20 years in the wild. But, they can live much longer in zoological parks, according to the zoo.