Penguin returned to Dublin Zoo

Kelli the penguin is back at home in Dublin Zoo after she was stolen this morning around 8am.

After she was looked over by vets, the 10-year-old female Humboldt penguin was returned to her mate, Mick.

Gardai are looking for three men who climbed into the zoo this morning before opening hours and took the penguin.

It was reported the men put the penguin in a bag and left the zoo using a taxi, and the men told the driver that the penguin was a rabbit.

Kelli was found on a footpath at Rutland Street in the north inner city. Rutland Street is at least 4km away from the zoo, located between Mountjoy Square and Connolly Station.

The zoo stressed that the theft was serious given how the penguin could have been harmed, put under stress or knocked down.

“Dublin Zoo is naturally relieved that the animal is safe and unharmed and back in the Zoo. However, we wish to underline our annoyance about this incident. The welfare and health of all animals is our primary concern and this kind of incident is not frivolous and is certainly not something amusing,” said a spokesperson from Dublin Zoo.

“We would once again like to express our huge appreciation to the Gardai with whom we have an excellent relationship and whose professionalism and swift action ensured the safe return of the penguin. This is a criminal matter and is in the hands of the Gardai.”

IMAGE ABOVE: Photo by Leon Farrell / Photocall Ireland
IMAGES BELOW: Thanks to @irishmediawatch / show Zoo keeper Garth Dejong feeding Kelli.

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