Penguins caught in oil spills are in need of knitted sweaters. ABC News, Australia reported on March 6, 2014, that The Penguin Foundation is always in need of sweaters. These sweaters help prevent penguins from cleaning the oil off of their feathers. It also helps them retain body heat.
The sweaters prevent the penguins from cleaning themselves with their beaks. When they do that, the birds ingest toxic chemicals which can kill them. Penguins are cleaned with soap and water to remove the oil. It can take several baths to get the birds clean.
During cleaning, the toxic oil is removed and so are the natural oils in the bird’s feathers. This reduces the penguin’s ability to keep warm. Sweaters are needed for the birds to retain body heat. It is also possible, that the sweaters help make the birds feel more secure in captivity while they recover from the effects of the oil spill.
The Penguin Foundation has information on their website about how to knit the jumpers and where to send them. If knitting isn’t your thing, you can “adopt a penguin” through monetary donations. It is not a true adoption, it is a sponsorship. The foundation is not adopting out penguins.
Lynda Altman is a professional crafter and writer. She started crocheting as a young child. She crochets, quilts, sews, and creates beaded jewelry. Lynda loves vintage stitching samplers and enjoys counted cross stitch. You can find her work and patterns for sale on Etsy and Craftsy. She writes a crochet blog called The Granny Squared. You can contact her at the above link or on Twitter @fusgeyer.