"...they will have made of the ridiculous a little religion, and out of Penguinity brought peace." - Eaton

June 1, 2009

Macaroni penguin study

Macaroni, the most numerous species of penguin, were the subject of an interesting study by French researchers. AFP reports:

Zoologists have long wondered where the flightless seabird goes during these long spells away from land -- and now French scientists, in a study published in Wednesday, believe they can supply the answer.

A team from National Centre for Scientific Research (CNRS) attached monitoring devices to a dozen male and female macaroni penguins (Eudyptes chrysolophus) at the onset of winter on the French Indian Ocean territory of the Kerguelen Islands.

Weighing just six grammes (a fifth of an ounce) each, the gadgets were attached to the penguins' legs by a harmless plastic strap.

The tufty-headed birds headed out to sea a few days later for their annual forage and the tiny recorders logged the location, ambient light and water temperature wherever they went.
Photo, by Penguinity, shows a Macaroni penguin being turned away from a zodiac (regulations prohibit Macaroni penguins from riding in zodiacs).