Zoo Animals

Rockhopper Penguins

Penguin — rockhopper

Eudyptes chrysocome

At the Detroit Zoo
The rockhopper penguins can be seen at the Penguinarium – the first zoo facility built specifically for penguins – along with the macaroni, gentoo and king penguins.  A unique circular pool lets the birds swim continuously, giving them the ability to swim fast enough to porpoise and “fly” through the water.  The Detroit Zoo is one of the few zoos where penguins can display this natural behavior.


The rockhopper penguin has black and white feathers, with yellow feathers extending from its eyebrows backwards.  The name rockhopper comes from its ability to jump off cliffs.  When on land, it tends to hop.

Fun Facts

  • The first egg produced by the rockhopper penguin is usually 20-50% smaller than its second egg.

  • The male can produce “penguin’s milk” for the hatchling if the female does not come back with food.