Happy Feet: Where Is the World’s Favorite Penguin?

By ABC News

Sep 12, 2011 11:10am
happ feet penguin feared dead thg 110912 wblog Happy Feet: Where Is the Worlds Favorite Penguin?

Happy Feet at the Wellington Zoo. Xinhua, Liu Jieqiu/AP Photo

ABC News’ Alicia Tejada reports:

Happy Feet, the wayward emperor penguin, seems to be lost yet again.

No signal from his fitted GPS device has been received since Friday, which could mean a number of things, including the possibility that he has been eaten, according to the company monitoring his progress.

Engineers have analyzed diagnostic information from satellite transmitters that make contact with the GPS device, thus allowing them and Happy Feet fans to monitor the penguin’s whereabouts, Sirtrack said in a statement on its website today.

The company said the device was “operating as expected at the last transmission received.”

It’s also possible the penguin is spending a lot of time under water after finding a good source of food, Sirtrack said. Another theory is that the glue on the device has dissolved, something the company knew could happen when Happy Feet molts, or sheds his feathers.

There’s also the small chance that solar flares are getting in the way of transmissions between the GPS device and the satellites that track it. Then there’s the biggest fear: that Happy Feet has become a predator’s happy meal.

Sirtrack’s managers said in a statement that they are disappointed that they’re unable to track Happy Feet’s progress. They said they’ve “contacted the company that operates the satellites on this subject and they expect a response from them within the next 48 hours.”

In the meantime, they are expected to keep monitoring Happy Feet’s satellite account and update their website with any news.

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