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Chinstrap Penguin

From Opus

Alternative name: Bearded Penguin

Adult carrying pebble.Photo © by Rodrigo TapiaArdley Peninsula, King George Island, South Shetland Archipelago, Antarctica, January 1992
Adult carrying pebble.
Photo © by Rodrigo Tapia
Ardley Peninsula, King George Island, South Shetland Archipelago, Antarctica, January 1992
Pygoscelis antarcticus


[edit] Identification

Length 68-76cm, Smallest of the pygoscelid penguins.
Adult: Bluish-grey to blue-black above, white below. Crown and rear of head black, face and throat white with narrow 'chinstrap' across throat from ear to ear.
Bill black
Legs and feet pale pink.
Immature: Similar but with dusky freckling on face and more extensive dark cap extending to eye.

[edit] Distribution

Circumpolar in Antarctic seas.

Breeds on the Antarctic Peninsula and on South Georgia and the South Shetland, South Orkney and South Sandwich Islands. Increasing and expanding range and now breeds in small numbers on Bouvet, Peter First, Heard and Balleny Islands.

Pelagic range mainly in open sea bordering pack ice but movements unclear.

Vagrants have been recorded in the Falkland Islands, Tasmania, Macquarie Islands and Campbell Island.

[edit] Taxonomy

This is a monotypic species[1].

[edit] Habitat

Breeds in large, densely-packed colonies on slopes above shores of islands and Antarctic coasts, otherwise at sea.

[edit] Behaviour

Immature molting. Photo © by Joseph MorlanGrytviken, South Georgia and South Sandwich Islands, 6 March 2018.
Immature molting.
Photo © by Joseph Morlan
Grytviken, South Georgia and South Sandwich Islands, 6 March 2018.

[edit] Breeding

Colonial breeder, November-March, two white eggs laid nest is a shallow scrape ringed with small stones. Two white eggs laid in November and incubated for 36 days, first by male than female. Young fed by both sexes and join creche at about 4 weeks.

Aggressive at breeding colonies and regularly charges human intruders.

[edit] Diet

Crustaceans, especially krill.

[edit] Vocalisation

Loud braying, growling and hissing calls.

[edit] References

  1. Clements, J. F., T. S. Schulenberg, M. J. Iliff, D. Roberson, T. A. Fredericks, B. L. Sullivan, and C. L. Wood. 2017. The eBird/Clements checklist of birds of the world: v2017, with updates to August 2017. Downloaded from
  2. Martínez, I., Christie, D.A., Jutglar, F. & Garcia, E.F.J. (2018). Chinstrap Penguin (Pygoscelis antarcticus). In: del Hoyo, J., Elliott, A., Sargatal, J., Christie, D.A. & de Juana, E. (eds.). Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona. (retrieved from on 8 June 2018).

[edit] External Links


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