Macaroni penguin

At penguin coast you can say 'Ciao' to Tony the Don, Vinnie the voice, Little Nico and Frankie the fish!

The Macaroni mafia are taking over the joint.

They’re easy to spot in amongst their Humboldt cousins at Penguin Coast as they have distinctive yellow crest feathers and a prominent orange beak.

If you love penguins, you can adopt a penguin today, or even feed a penguin on a penguin experience!

One of the Macaroni penguins at Folly Farm

The macaroni penguin is a large species, found in the Sub-Antarctic and Antarctic Peninsula. Their name comes from the distinctive yellow feathered crest on the penguins’ heads that apparently resemble the feathers that featured on hats worn by men in the 18th century; referred to as macaroni’s (just like in the classic nursery rhyme ‘Yankee Doodle’).


The Macaroni penguin is classed as vulnerable. Common threats to their existence include commercial fishing, marine pollution and predators.

Macaroni penguin questions and answers

What do they eat?
Mainly krill, small fish and squid.

What’s their preferred habitat?
Mountains and snow covered rocky areas near the coast.

How long can they live for?
Up to 20 years.

macaroni penguins at Folly Farm

How big can they grow?
Up to 70cm in length.

How fast can they swim?
Between 15kph and 24kph.

Can you adopt a penguin?
Yes! You can adopt a penguin with Folly Farm today!

Zoo Membership

We're proud to be members of the British and Irish Association of Zoos and Aquariums (BIAZA) and the European Association of Zoos and Aquaria (EAZA). Our membership means we share knowledge with leading zoos across the UK and Europe, and we learn from them too.