Welcome to the Kororā Cam Project where you will be able to get a look into the secret life of the worlds smallest penguin.

About Kororā 

Kororā or Little penguins are the world’s smallest penguin, standing at only 35-43 cm and weigh in at just over 1kg. Kororā is perfectly camouflaged while hunting for food on the ocean with a white underbelly and a medium to dark indigo-blue on the top side. The penguins hunt at sea, diving for prey generally in waters less than 50 m deep. Their diet is composed of varying proportions of small shoaling fish, squid and crustacean species. They will swim up to 25km offshore and up to 70km from their colonies, reaching speeds of 6kph. Alas as sea temperatures have risen so have the sightings of starving or emaciated penguins this is due to kororā having to go further and deeper for the small fish they require for themselves and chicks.

Little penguins are widely distributed along the coastlines of the North, South, Stewart and Chatham Islands and their offshore islands. They visit (but are not known to breed at) the Three Kings Islands, and are vagrant to the Snares Islands. Little penguins are also common in south-western and south-eastern Australia, where they are also known as fairy penguin. Little penguins are mainly found within 25 km of the shore during the breeding season but can travel further out to sea when not breeding. Major breeding areas in New Zealand include Hauraki Gulf islands, Wellington Harbour, Cook Strait islands and Marlborough Sounds, West Coast, Fiordland, Motunau Island, Banks Peninsula, Oamaru, Otago Peninsula, islands in Foveaux Strait and around Stewart Island, and the Chatham Islands.

About Our Live Cams

The Kororā live cam uses two high-res cameras. The first high definition Axis Dom Camera is situated in a nesting box giving views a birds-eye view into the nest where you will get to watch from egg to fledgeling. The second camera, an AXIS Q6155-E PTZ Network Camera which is installed right at the only entrance in and out of the nesting ground. Both cameras are equipped with built-in IR.

About the Kororā Life Cycle

Little penguins can breed as isolated pairs, in colonies, or semi-colonially. Little penguins will mate for life although they do have divorce rates similar to humans. If a nesting location has been successful in the past they will return to the same nesting site year after year. Nests are situated close to the sea in burrows excavated by the birds or other species, or in caves, rock crevices, under logs or in or under a variety of man-made structures including nest boxes, pipes, stacks of wood or timber, and buildings. They are monogamous within a breeding season and share incubation and chick-rearing duties. They are the only species of penguin capable of producing more than one clutch of eggs per breeding season, but few populations do so. The 1-2 white or lightly mottled brown eggs are laid from July to mid-November, and with a rarer second (or even third) clutches beginning as late as December. Incubation takes up to 36 days. Chicks are brooded for 18-38 days and fledge after 7-8 weeks. Pairs are often highly faithful to nest sites.

The Secret Little Penguin

Little penguins are nocturnal on land. They return to nesting areas at dusk, congregating in small groups, or “rafts” offshore. Rafts usually come ashore together and are comprised of the same individuals each night. They feed at sea as solitary individuals or small groups, rarely more than 6 individuals. They must stay ashore continuously for about 2 weeks during the annual moult (mainly between January and March) when all feathers are replaced simultaneously.

The little penguins have many challenges just to stay alive!.

Habitat loss, Plastic_pollution plastic pollution, overfishing, predators such as dogs, cats and stoats and the increasing warming seas are all putting the little penguin under immense pressure.

Penguins are vulnerable especially while they are ashore during moult or nesting periods. Keeping dogs on a lead and away from nesting locations is always advised.

Everyone can play a part in protecting kororā / Little Penguins

Watch the kororā live cams

24/7 live – Watch kororā / little penguins at the Wellington Niwa National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research Facility.


This project was only made possible by the support and generosity of