FAQ www.penguin.net.nz

How do humans exploit penguins?
In numerous places around the world, penguins have been exploited for food, oil and skins and even used as fish bait. As well as adult penguins, their eggs have also been exploited and in some places they are still collected today.

Tourism is another form of exploitation. There are many sites in the world where tourists can visit penguins in the wild and this is not always beneficial to the penguins or their environment. Penguins are also taken from the wild and held in zoos for benefit of us curious humans.

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How do penguins communicate?
Penguins communicate using calls and visual displays. These are used for such purposes as declaring territory, showing agression or submission, attracting and greeting mates.

Click on an icon to hear some penguins:
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      Blue Penguin
      Yellow-eyed penguin
      Snares penguin

 Fiordland penguin
 Fiordland penguin chick
How many penguins are there and where do they live?
Most authors recognise 17 species of penguin, but cases have been made to separate the rockhoppers into northern and southern species and to separate the white-flippered penguin from the blue penguin.

The species and sub-species currently recognised are;
Common name Scientific name Range Population
Genus Aptenodytes
(breeding pairs)
   King Aptenodytes patagonicus Subantarctic and Antarctic islands between 46° and 55° south. 1,100,000
   Emperor Aptenodytes forsteri Antarctic pack-ice zone 400,000
   Genus Pygoscelis      
   Gentoo Pygoscelis papua Subantarctic islands and the Antarctic Peninsula 600,000
   Adelie Pygoscelis adeliae Antactic continent and islands 5,000,000
   Chinstrap Pygoscelis antarctica Antarctic peninsula and subantarctic islands 7,500,000
Genus Eudyptes
   Rockhopper Eudyptes chrysocome Subantarctic islands 100,000
      (Southern)   Subantarctic islands south of Antarctic Polar front.  
      (Northern)   Subantarctic islands north of Antarctic Polar front.  
   Fiordland crested Eudyptes pachyrynchus Fiordland and Stewart Island coasts of New Zealand 5,000
   Snares crested Eudyptes robustus Snares Islands, New Zealand 30,000
   Erect-crested Eudyptes sclateri New Zealand subantarcic islands 150,000
   Macaroni Eudyptes chrysolophus Antarctic Peninsula, Antarctic and Subantarctic islands 11,800,000
   Royal Eudyptes schlegeli Macquarie Island, south of Australia 850,000
Genus Megadyptes
   Yellow-eyed Megadyptes antipodes South-east coast of New Zealand, Campbell and Auckland Islands 5,000
Genus Eudyptula
   Blue (little) Eudyptula minor New Zealand and Southern Australia 500,000
      (White-flippered) Eudyptula minor albosignata Banks Peninsula and Motunau Island, New Zealand  
Genus Spheniscus
   Magellanic Spheniscus magellanicus Southern Argentina and Chile, Falkland Islands 750,000
   African Spheniscus demersus South-east coast of South Africa and Namibia 50,000
   Humbolt Spheniscus humboltdi Peru and Chile 30,000
   Galapagos Spheniscus mendiculus Galapagos Islands, Equador 3,000

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