Monch, a 4-year-old Humboldt penguin (Spenciskas humbolti) living at Chester Zoo in the United Kingdom, had his first cataract surgery on a penguin at The Zoo to save his sight, and luckily, it was all planned. The team from Chester Zoo, a UK-registered conservation and education charity known for working with endangered animals, quickly intervened when it realized the stage was having trouble catching fish and other penguins.
Said Sophie Bissaker, Parrots and Penguin Keeper at Chester Zoo, in a statement sent to IFLScience, “We spotted that Munch was swimming slower than normal and was struggling to dive for the fish at feeding times – and if a penguin can’t catch a fish then you know something is amiss. That’s when we called in the zoo’s vets.”
“After a thorough examination, the team discovered that the stage had cloudy patches on each of its eye lenses – which showed him very little in the left eye and nothing on his right. This means that only specialist treatment can save his vision.” After calling the vet, they discovered that Manch had cataracts in both eyes, which made his vision difficult, and decided that surgery was the only option to save his vision.
“I’ve been in the veterinary field for about 24 years and Munch is the first powered penguin – they’re definitely not regular clients. Unfortunately, since his quality of life was affected by the decline, surgery was the only option we had,” said I Vet’s medical eye. Expert Aina Mathison, who performed this delicate surgery, said. A separate, shallow nursery pool was placed to restore the stage after successful surgery. He was joined by his wife Ruri to keep him as his partner.
“It was important for Meat to stay away from the rest of the group for a few weeks after his surgery, when we visited him regularly. However, the penguins live in tight-knit colonies and prefer to be with other birds, and so we decided to provide the stage with its mate Willie with some agency, ”said Bisekar.
“The buzz is really the point on Urli and wherever he goes, he follows, so I’m sure he’s given her some comfort.” “It was an emotional rollercoaster for everyone involved, and although the stage is still getting eye drops every day to help him heal, he is already swimming fast with water, feeding with this group again and walking around in comfort,” he added. Confident, happy little boy again!”