EAZA Ex situ Programme (EEP)

Gentoo penguin

(Pygoscelis papua)

 Lorna Moffat
Institution:   Edinburgh Zoo

EAZA Member Area


Edinburgh Zoo

IUCN Red List status

IUCN Red List LC


Programme roles

Indirect Conservation icon  Education
The EEP will be used to convey messages on the general threats to penguin. They are important flagship species for a healthy ocean ecosystem and can contribute to increasing public awareness of the status of penguins (10 out of 18 penguin species is declining) to highlight the need to conserve penguins in the wild and to protect their natural habitat. Personal behaviour change can help make an impact on conserving and protecting healthy ocean ecosystems. Messages surrounding: the impact of plastics and how tourists should behave in a wild penguin habitat are essential to contradict the sustainability messages at the environmental cost of keeping ex situ in a cooled environment. 

This role would be to fundraise for other more threatened penguin species, so conservation initiatives such as artificial nests, beach cleans, etc. can be financially supported. 
Non Conservation icon  Exhibit
Gentoo penguins are a very attractive species (active swimmer) that visitors like to see. This is a good sub-Antarctic species to start with for institutions.

In January 2024, the Gentoo penguin EEP had 896 animals in 30 institutions.

Programme highlights


LIFE logo with white paddingThis work is supported by the European Union LIFE NGO funding programme. The European Union is not responsible for the views displayed in publications and/or in conjunction with the activities for which the grant is used.