Little penguins were common in New Zealand, but most are now on offshore islands where there is less disturbance.
Their paddle-like flippers are excellent for ‘flying’ through the water at speeds of up to 6 km/h.
Their population and range of has been declining in areas not protected from predators. Where predator control is in place, populations have been stable or increasing.
Dogs are likely the greatest threat to little penguin. Cats, ferrets and stoats will also kill them.
These threats have increased with more coastal development bringing more dogs and the clearance of traditional nesting sites.
Source: Department of Conservation and licensed by greatbarrierisland.nz for re-use under the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International licence at http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/