Love Is in the Air

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Episode 1 of 6

Duration: 30 minutes

Meet Bluey and Sheila, one of the 13,000 little penguin couples who live on Phillip Island, off the coast of Australia. As the devoted penguin couple returns to their cliff-top home to begin the annual breeding cycle, Penguin Island introduces the dedicated team of rangers and scientists who will monitor and protect them through the hottest summer on record.

Among them is Marg Healy. With over 26 years of experience with penguins and other animals, Marg runs Phillip Island's animal hospital, looking after injured wildlife including little penguins, possums, koalas and other birds.

Field researcher Leanne Renwick weighs and examines the penguins to ensure they are up to the task of breeding. Her colleague Elizabeth Lundahl-Hegedus is a parade ranger and has lived within the Summerlands penguin colony for 30 years. It is a short walk from her house to the Penguin Parade, where the nightly parade of little penguins returns from sea.

We meet the feathered residents of the Penguin Cafe, a cluster of 'love nests' behind the busy Phillip Island tourist centre, where perennial bachelor Rocky and the determined yet slightly dim-witted Spike vie for the attention of the passing females as they attempt to attract a mate - including recent divorcee Tash.

Meanwhile, Bluey and Sheila lay their first clutch of eggs. While Sheila is off at sea hunting for food, the eggs hatch and Bluey must guard them until Sheila is home to meet her two young sons for the first time.

Last on

Sun 26 Feb 2012 14:30 BBC One Scotland only

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More episodes

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  • Photo: Leanne Renwick

    Photo: Leanne Renwick

    Researcher Leanne Renwick holds baby penguins Sammy and Tom.

  • Image: Little Penguins

    Image: Little Penguins

    In Australia Little Penguins are also referred to as ‘Fairy Penguins’ due to their tiny size of just 43 cm tall.

Credits

Narrator
Rolf Harris
Director
Simon Target
Series Producer
Sally Ingleton

Broadcasts

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