Breeding Gentoos

In the previous post, I explained the difference in the breeding cycle between Gentoo and Adelie Penguins, with Adelie Penguins starting some weeks earlier as the Gentoos. But also between the Gentoos, there are differences. People often ask why the penguins make such an effort to climb to the higher ridges or the summits of hills to breed. They are not the best walkers after all, and cannot fly.

20171229_Arjen_Drost_58981
Gentoo Penguin breeding along the shore, still on eggs.

Higher on the hills, however, there is less snow. Usually windier, less snow builds up there so the birds can start breeding earlier. At Madder Cliffs this was clearly visible, the Gentoos who were breeding along the shore, still had eggs or newly hatched chicks, higher on the mountain, they already had larger chicks (as can be seen in the main picture in this post).

Arjen Drost

Arjen is a Polar ecologist, nature photographer and full time expedition guide on expedition cruise ships in both Polar regions. With his pictures and stories he likes to show the beauty of these very fragile and threatened places.

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