Patrick O'Brian Discussion Forum

'Mega-colonies' of 1.5 million penguins discovered in Antarctica

Fri Mar 2

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The discovery shows the remote area is a vital refuge for wildlife from climate change and overfishing and should be protected by a new reserve, say scientists . . The huge numbers of Adélie penguins were found on the Danger Islands in the Weddell Sea, on the east side of the Antarctic Peninsula. It is a difficult place to reach and has seldom been visited

. . The discovery of the mega-colonies is a major development for polar scientists – and welcome good news. In October, they reported that just two chicks had survived from a colony of 40,000 at Petrel Island, a few thousand kilometres west of the Antarctic peninsula.

Other penguins are also facing an uncertain future. On Monday, researchers warned that king penguins could almost disappear from Antarctica by the end of the century unless climate change is curbed.

* a group of islands lying 24 km (13 nmi) east-south-east of Joinville Island. They were discovered on 28 December 1842 by a British expedition under James Clark Ross, who so named them because, appearing among heavy fragments of ice, they were almost completely concealed until the ship was nearly upon them.


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