World

Confused Emperor Penguin Lands on New Zealand Beach, Transported to Zoo

June 21: An Emperor penguin is seen on Peka Peka Beach of the Kapiti Coast in New Zealand. Emperor penguins typically spend their entire lives in Antarctica and almost never make landfall near humans, with the last sighting in New Zealand being more than 44 years ago.

June 21: An Emperor penguin is seen on Peka Peka Beach of the Kapiti Coast in New Zealand. Emperor penguins typically spend their entire lives in Antarctica and almost never make landfall near humans, with the last sighting in New Zealand being more than 44 years ago.  (AP Photo/New Zealand Herald, Mark Mitchell)

Fears over the health of a young Emperor penguin stranded on a New Zealand beach have prompted officials to move it to a local zoo.

The penguin's rare 2,000-mile journey from Antarctica has captured the imagination of many. But veterinarians became concerned enough about the bird Friday that they stepped in.

Peter Simpson, a program manager for the Department of Conservation, said the penguin was eating sand and sticks and that its health appeared to be deteriorating after four days on Peka Peka Beach on New Zealand's North Island.

A crew placed it in an ice box and drove it to Wellington Zoo. Experts there will try to restore the penguin to health and return it to the wild.