Melbourne wildlife officials are warning tourists to keep their selfie sticks away from the penguins after the use of selfie sticks has left them “very frightened”.
Although not everyone is at fault, wildlife officer Suriya Vij says a small few have been putting the sticks into the penguins' burrows.
“That’s their safe place,” Suriya told news.com.au. “That’s where they are going to rest and breathe, so having a selfie stick down there is very disturbing for them.”
Following attacks on the penguins, the state government has funded security patrols this summer to help keep them safe.
“Most people do the right thing, but we do have some people who climb fences, climb down on to the rock and try to shove cameras right into their faces, Suriya said. "
She added: “The penguins come in to rest at night in their burrows and that’s when people are putting their cameras in there, sometimes with a selfie stick to try and get the perfect shot.
“They are really sensitive animals and they do get freaked out.”