The new (I assume temporary) mascot is Tuz, a Tasmanian Devil that's sporting a fake penguin beak.
As Jon Corbet writes:
Tuz began his career as the mascot for the 2009 edition of the linux.conf.au conference, held in Hobart, Tasmania. So why is Tuz moving on to the mainline kernel?
It turns out that Tasmanian devils are currently endangered by an especially nasty form of communicable cancer. The lca2009 organizers decided to dedicate the event’s traditional charity auction to the cause of helping research into this disease.
In total, the LCA auction managed to raise about $40,000 Australian, but that's not enough to solve the problem. So, with any luck, giving Tux a vacation just might raise some awareness and bring in some more dollars to help protect the Tasmanian Devil.
Even if you're not a Linux lover, you can still help spread the word and donate to save the adorable little fuzzies. Check out "Save the Tasmanian Devil" for more info and to donate.
I have to say, I'm partial to Tuz: Maybe I've been looking at Tux too long, but I really like Tuz too and would hate to see him fade away after 2.6.29. The LCA team deserves some major props for the mascot design and execution -- not only did they come up with a great design, they also gave away plush Tuz toys to all the LCA registrants (and sold a bunch of extras to raise money at $20AU each), which is not a trivial exercise. Designing and having a plush toy produced takes quite a while.