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Chinstrap Penguin colony at Point Wild | by Mark Carmody
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Chinstrap Penguin colony at Point Wild

www.markcarmodyphotography.com/blog and www.rarebirdalert.co.uk/RealData/Articles.asp

 

Elephant Island is an ice-covered mountainous island off the coast of Antarctica in the outer reaches of the South Shetland Islands, in the Southern Ocean. Its name was given by early explorers sighting elephant seals on its shores. The island is situated 245 kilometres (152 mi) north-northeast of the tip of the Antarctic Peninsula, 1,253 kilometres (779 mi) westsouthwest of South Georgia, 935 kilometres (581 mi) south of the Falkland Islands, and 885 kilometres (550 mi) southeast of Cape Horn.

 

The Chinstrap Penguin (Pygoscelis antarctica) is a species of penguin which is found in the South Sandwich Islands, Antarctica, Deception Island, the South Orkneys, South Shetland, South Georgia, Bouvet Island and Balleny. Their name derives from the narrow black band under their heads which makes it appear as if they are wearing black helmets, making them one of the most easily identified types of penguin. They live on barren islands and during winter congregate on large icebergs of the sub-Antarctic region and the Antarctic Peninsula; however, they require solid, snow-free ground for nesting. The chinstrap penguin's primary predator is the leopard seal. The 16 million chinstrap penguins have typical lifespans of 15–23 years. (wikipedia)

 

They are incredible mountaineers and nest on sites that appear to have vertical cliff faces to overcome to reach! How these guys manage to climb up these cliff faces is quite astounding. This colony is just to the east of Point Wild on Elephant Island.

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Taken on November 30, 2014