London Zoo’s most popular penguin survives outbreak of avian malaria

Visitors to London Zoo will be relieved to hear a favourite penguin has survived unscathed after an outbreak of avian malaria.

Six penguins died this summer after contracting malaria from mosquito bites, but Ricky – one of the zoo’s most popular animals – was not affected.

Rockhopper penguin Ricky is one of the most adopted animals at the zoo, thanks to his attention grabbing performances for visitors.

He likes to perch on the high rocks at London Zoo’s penguin beach and pose for photographs, with his distinctive yellow crest making him stand out from the crowd.

The recent avian malaria outbreak was spread by mosquitoes, and cannot be passed between birds.

A zoo spokesman confirmed the outbreak has cleared up, with all penguins given increased doses of anti-malarial medicine and lavender trees planted to ward off mosquitoes.