Penguin lovers have reason to be thankful this month with the discovery of two new emperor penguin breeding sites. According to ScienceDaily, the two colonies in Antarctica are home to 6,000 previously unknown chicks, which effectively triples the number of breeding emperor penguins believed to be in the area.
Emperor penguins are colonial nesters that breed in tremendous flocks, returning to the same nesting site year after year. When Antarctic ice changes disrupt those colonies, the birds can struggle to breed safely. In 2010 a large glacier fractured, and it was feared that emperor penguin numbers would drastically decline as a result.
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Emperor Penguin Chick
Photo © Michael Van Woert / NOAA NESDIS / ORA