Crested Penguins (Eudyptes)

Snares Crested Penguin (Eudyptes Robustus)

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Snares Crested Photo Gallery

Snares Crested Photo Gallery 1

They have an average length of 20 to 28 inches and the weight for males varies between 5.5 to 8.8lbs. depending on age and the time of the year. The head, cheeks, and throat and upper parts are black and the under parts white. They have a prominent area of bare shin at the base of the bill, which helps distinguish them from the Fiordland Penguin. They have reddish eyes and beaks. At sea they resemble most other crested penguins as the crests flatten against the side of the nape, which is most similar to the Fiordland and Erect Crested Penguins. Females as with all crested penguins weigh slightly less. They breed only on the Snares Island, but the non-breeding range extends to the Antipodes, Chatham, Stewart Islands, and the mainland South Island. They nest in dense colonies under tree cover or on costal rocks. They feed mainly on squid (~20%), Krill (~60%) and fish (~20%). They pursue their prey with shallow dives. They can swim up to 15 mph. There are an estimated 30,000 breeding pairs of penguins. Limited breeding areas make the population vulnerable, despite the fact that most live on the Snares Islands which is a New Zealand protected refugee. Snares colonies are spread over 1.3 square miles, the smallest breeding area in the world for any penguin. They only breed at one location and the Royal penguin is the only other penguin to do so. They are one of four penguins endemic to New Zealand. Their predators at sea as with most penguins are the leopard seal and also sea lions. There are no introduced land mammals on Snares Island. They lay a smaller A egg and a larger (by 85%) B egg as other crested penguins. Unlike the Rockhopper both eggs hatch successfully 64% of the time.

Royal Penguin (Eudyptes Schlegeli)

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Royal Photo Gallery

Royal Photo Gallery1

They are the second tallest of the crested penguins averaging 27 inches (range 26 to 30) in length. The weight in males varies from 9.5 to 15 lbs with females weighing slightly less. There is less data on their weights than with other penguins. They are confined almost entirely to and breeding restricted only to Macquarie Island a subantarctic island of Australia. They nest on beaches or on bare area on slopes covered with vegetation. Non-breeding range is around the waters of Macquarie Island. Rarely they have been seen outside of Macquarie Island. They were previously considered to be a subspecies of the Macaroni penguin because of the resemblance of the orange-yellow plumes. However the cheeks from crest to throat are pure while or pale gray (see middle thumbnail above) which distinguishes them from the black faced Macaroni penguin. Their eyes are grey-black while the Macaroni's are red. They eat mainly fish and krill. Their population is estimated at 850,00 pairs and is considered stable. They lay a smaller A egg whose survival is ~15% and the larger B egg as other crested penguins. The female generally displaces the A egg from the nest. They can dive at a depth of 50 to 150 feet and dives rarely exceed two minutes. They can swim up to 6.2 mph.

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