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Macaroni Penguin

March 7, 2022

The Macaroni Penguin is one of the most common penguins in the world. The Macaroni Penguins are common in the Antarctic Peninsula on the many Antarctic and subantarctic islands in the Indian and Atlantic oceans. Some species of Macaroni penguin can also be found near the coasts of Argentina and Chile.

Here is more information that will enrich your understanding of the Macaroni Penguin.

Facts about the Macaroni Penguin

  • The Macaroni Penguin has yellow-orange and black plumes extending backward on the head’s side, above the eyes. They have red eyes.
  • It is 51 to 61 cm tall.
  • It has an average weight of 4.5 kg.
  • The Macaroni Penguin feeds on squids, small fish, and krill.
  • Its predators include Skuas, sheathbills, kelp gulls, killer whales, fur seals, Antarctic fur seals, giant petrels, leopard seals, and sharks.
  • Its incubation period lasts between 33 to 40 days.
  • The macaroni penguin lays two eggs.
  • It can live for up to 15 to 20 years.
  • Macaroni Penguins prefer living in mountains and snow rocky covered areas near the coastal region.
  • It can swim at a speed of between 15kph and 24kph.
  • The population of Macaroni Penguins is estimated to be 6.3 million breeding pairs. This population resides in 58 breeding colonies.

The Behavior of Macaroni Penguin

The Macaroni Penguin communicates through many complex ritual behaviors.

  • It flaps its wings, nods its head, and makes a loud, screeching noise.
  • Sometimes Macaroni Penguins bow, gesture, and preen with their fins.
  • It raises its crown feathers and bristles its yellow tufts when happy.
  • It uses its webbed feet to steer when in water.
  • Its tail functions as a rudder when swimming.

The eye-sight of Macaroni Penguin

The Macaroni penguin is short-sighted, but its vision is unique in water. The eyes of the Macaroni Penguin are accustomed to the colors of the sea. This excellent vision is essential in avoiding predation, its primary predators, Leopards seals, and killer whales that live in the ocean.


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