Penguin death sparks petition for road speed reduction

7:51 pm on 9 December 2018

A little blue penguin killed by a car last night has sparked a call for a lower speed limit on Marine Parade in Timaru.

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A little blue penguin was killed by a car in front of a large crowd on Marine Parade last night (file photo). Photo: AGAMI Photo Agency/123rf

Forest and Bird has launched a petition calling on Timaru District Council to reduce the speed limit along Marine Parade.

It says people speed past the birds' nesting area at Caroline Bay, driving at up to 100km an hour sometimes.

The call comes after a penguin was killed in front of about 90 tourists and locals when it was hit by a car.

The native penguin was part of group of birds coming ashore at Marine Parade.

Forest and Bird said the penguin was of breeding age and its mate was seen calling for it for more than an hour after it was killed.

This is the little penguin's breeding season, but it is not known whether the pair had eggs or chicks.

Little penguins, or korora, are a protected species, and killing one can carry up to a $100,000 fine and a year in jail.

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