Nowadays, animals like the penguin have to go even further behind their natural habitat to find fish, which seem to have become a precious commodity, not only for various species of animals but humans as well. An unusual phenomenon took place on the shore of Argentina, where a one million penguin colony has flocked to the region due to the unusual abundance of fish.
According to the wildlife officials from Argentina, the penguin colony that has gathered on the shores of the Punta Tombo peninsula is the largest one yet to have been recorded in the last few years. The large crowd of Magellanic penguins has been a sight to behold for the tourists who visit the region every year.
The Argentinian peninsula has become an ideal nesting ground for the penguin colony, due to the fact that nearby waters have seen a large increase in the populations of sardines, anchovies, and various other small fish and crustaceans, which represent the main food source for the animals.
The Magellanic penguins can be distinguished from other members of the species through the broad crescent of white feathers which are extending above each eye and down to the chin, as well as by a tiny spot of pink on the face. This particular type of penguins, measuring 20 inches tall, are fond of warm weather and tend to breed in large colonies throughout the shores of Chile and Argentina.
However, between March and September, the penguin colony can go as far north as Brazil. They come ashore during September and October in order to lay eggs and search for food. They mostly live in shelters made from bushes or their own burrows.
A large number of penguins seen in Argentina shows that while the birds are not endangered, they are nonetheless threatened by human activity such as overfishing which leads to a decline in fish populations, oil spills and climate change which kills around 40,000 penguins each year.
Furthermore, weather conditions during the hatching period can lead to thousands of baby penguins dying, or be near-death, as chicks don’t do well they happen to get wet.
What do you think about the large penguin colony? Should we do more to protect these animals?
Image source: Wikipedia