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Penguin Species

The Snares Island get’s its name from its home – Snares Island, located in New Zealand. The Snares Island Penguin is very similar to the Fiordland penguin, as well as the Erect-chested penguin. Snares Island actually serves as a kind of private sanctuary for the Snares Island Penguin, and there are no humans allowed on the island. This legislation, as enforced by the government in New Zealand, has allowed for the penguin to not have to deal with many of the endangerments that many other penguins face, such as loss of habitat due to human development. However, the Snares Island penguin is very small, making it more vulnerable to some threats and predators. There are about 25, 000 breeding pairs of the Snares Island Penguin on Snares Island.

The Snares penguin is usually identified by its bill or beak. The Snares penguin’s bill is much thicker, larger, and even heavier looking than many other penguins that look similar to the Snares penguin. There is white all around the base of the beak.

When the Snares Island penguin breeds, they tend to breed in the summer. On Snares Island, the temperature is fairly moderate and warm, great for both vegetation and breeding. There is often a lot of fighting, and confrontation when it comes to fighting and finding both a place to nest and breed, as well as when it comes to finding and gathering nesting materials. The Snares Island couples will begin to find little holes in the ground, and then cover them with all of the materials that they gather together, usually grass, branches, sticks, and leaves from trees, that they find around, and use them to line their nest or burrow. When the nest is finished being built by the two Snares Island penguins, the female Snares Island penguin will then lay its two eggs, and like many other penguins, the first egg won’t hatch at all. Both the male and female Snares Island Penguin will incubate the egg that lives on and sticks it out, for at least two months. The egg will then hatch, and the female Snares Island Penguin goes out to hunt for food, while the male Snares Island Penguin will stay behind and look after the newly hatched penguin. The younger Snares Island chicks will stick together to protect one another, until they are old enough to look for one another.


The Royal Penguin is only found on the Macquarie Island, in South Australia, near the Pacific Ocean. The Royal Penguin is surrounded with many different penguins, including the King Penguin, the Rockhopper Penguin, and the Gentoo Penguin. The Royal Penguin feeds on krill, some small crustaceans, fish, and a lot of squid. The Royal Penguin is usually smaller than the male penguin. The Royal Penguin will remain at sea all winter, leaving their Island to explore the Antarctic waters for food.

Royal penguins breed all over the Macquarie Island, in little colonies that are scattered throughout the island. There are about 850,000 pairs of breeding Royal Penguins, which makes it one of the larger species of penguins. The Royal Penguin is actually the largest penguin out of the crested penguin species. The Royal Penguin has bright orange crests, as well as black crests, coming out of the sides of its head. The Royal Penguin also has white feathers all over its entire face. The Royal Penguin is a part of a sub-species of the Macaroni penguin, sometimes leading to the two being mixed up.

The royal penguin breeds in the early fall. The royal penguin will typically stick together in large groups, and is usually found near rockhopper penguins. The male Royal Penguin will come to the breeding area to begin building a nest, collecting all kinds of building materials, including twigs, branches, sticks, grasses and pebbles to build the nest. The female Royal Penguin will arrive within the month, and the male Royal Penguins will begin courting them over to mate, using their typical methods of communication, including chirping, vocalizations and verbal signs, as well as physical movements and signals. The female will then lay two eggs within a couple of weeks, and, like many penguins, only one egg will typically live on and stay alive. The male and female Royal penguins will take turns incubating this egg for a little over a month. The Royal Penguin chick will hatch out of the egg, and the male Royal Penguin will watch over the chick while the female Royal Penguin hunts for food to feed her family. After a while, both of the Royal Penguin parents become responsible for gathering and searching out food, leaving the Royal Penguin chicks alone. At this time, the Royal Penguin chicks will gather together to stay safe, and after two months they can fend for themselves completely.


Erect-Crested Penguin

The erect-chested penguin is often know as the ‘Sclater’s Penguin’.  There are about 200, 000 erect-crested penguins, and the erect-crested penguin looks a lot like both the Fjordland penguin, as well as the Snares crested penguin. The erect-crested penguin is actually the largest of the various crested penguin species, often weighing around 3 to 4 kg. The erect-crested penguin gets its name from, of course, the stiff crests it has, though it still slightly resembles some others. As with many other penguins, the male erect-crested penguins are typically larger than the female erect-crested penguins. The erect chested penguin is typically found strictly in New Zealand, or the sub Antarctic region, or among the Antipodes and Bounty Islands. The erect-chested penguin live and breed strictly on these four islands. The adult erect-crested penguins have black heads, as well as black throats, and will have a black throat with a yellow strip running across their face, with a white belly. Researchers do not know a lot about the breeding habits and patterns of the erect-chested penguin, but they are most likely similar to other erect-crested penguins.

Erect-crested penguins are known for being very social, and constantly communicate with one another through body language, movements and chirping. The erect-chested penguin often will notice each other through initially spotting one another, and then making their signature erect-chested penguin movements, and making their signature erect-chested penguin vocals in one another’s direction.

The erect-chested penguin usually breeds in the early fall, with the females following the males. The erect-chested penguin will begin building nests for themselves, as little holes in the ground, made out of any plants or materials they can find in the forest. They usually use some grasses, stones, and mud to keep it all together. The erect-chested penguin female will then lay two eggs, with only one of the eggs that hatch ending up surviving. The second egg will also usually be much larger than the first egg that the erect-chested penguin lays Due to the erect-chested penguin’s outgoing, vocal nature, they typically are very argumentative when building their nests, often fighting over building materials and where they choose to nest. The erect-chested penguin tends to live in tightknit groups, and sticks closely together.

The erect-chested penguin tends to feed on crustaceans, small fish, and krill, which is typical of many varieties of penguins.


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