What time do the penguins come in at Bicheno?


Bicheno, a coastal town located on the east coast of Tasmania, Australia, is home to a unique penguin colony. Tourists flock to Bicheno to witness the fascinating phenomenon of penguins returning to their burrows after a day of fishing at sea. If you are planning a visit to Bicheno, it is essential to know the best time to see these adorable creatures in action. In this article, we will explore the various factors that influence the penguins’ arrival time and provide useful tips for an unforgettable penguin-watching experience.

Factors affecting penguin arrival time:

1. Season:

The time at which the penguins come in at Bicheno varies depending on the season. During the summer months of December to February, the daylight hours are longer, and the penguins generally return to shore later in the evening. In contrast, during the winter months of June to August, the sun sets earlier, prompting the penguins to come back earlier.

2. Weather conditions:

Weather conditions play a significant role in the penguins’ arrival time. Rough seas and stormy weather can delay their return to the shore, as it becomes more challenging for them to swim and navigate through the waves. On calm and clear nights, the penguins tend to come in earlier.

3. Food availability:

The availability of food sources influences the penguins’ behavior. As they primarily feed on fish and other marine creatures, the abundance of food in the water determines when they return to their burrows. It is essential to note that the penguins’ arrival time may vary from day to day based on the availability and proximity of their food sources.

Best time for penguin-watching:

What time do the penguins come in at Bicheno?

Based on the factors mentioned above, the best time to see the penguins in Bicheno varies throughout the year. During the summer months, it is recommended to arrive at the penguin viewing area around dusk, approximately an hour before sunset. This will give you ample time to find a spot and witness the penguins returning ashore.

In winter, the penguins generally come in earlier. It is advised to arrive at the penguin viewing area around 30 minutes before sunset to ensure you don’t miss their arrival. However, it is always recommended to check the latest information from local authorities or tour operators to get accurate timing.

Tips for a memorable penguin-watching experience:

  • Arrive early to secure a good vantage point and avoid overcrowding.
  • Respect the penguins’ natural habitat and follow any guidelines provided.
  • Keep noise to a minimum to avoid disturbing the penguins.
  • Dress warmly, as the evenings can get chilly, especially during the winter months.
  • Bring binoculars or a camera with a zoom lens to get a closer look at the penguins without disturbing them.
  • Consider joining a guided tour for a more informative and enriching experience.


Bicheno offers a remarkable opportunity to witness the enchanting sight of penguins returning to their burrows at dusk. Understanding the factors that influence their arrival time, along with following the provided tips, will help you make the most out of your penguin-watching experience. Don’t forget to check the latest information and enjoy the magical moments as you observe these adorable creatures in their natural habitat.

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