How Quickly They Grow – a Teenaged Penguin in Tierra del Fuego

Young Magellanic penguin on Isla Martillo, Beagle Channel
Young Magellanic penguin on Isla Martillo, Beagle Channel

This is a young Magellanic penguin, or (Spheniscus magellanicus), patiently posing in the stiff winds that pound Isla Martillo, a small island on the Beagle Channel southeast of Ushuaia, Argentina. I wish I had hair like that.

OK, in strict human terms, he’s not really a teenager. But when I crossed paths with him in late January, he was about two months old and already nearly as tall as his parents. The primary thing setting him apart from his elders was that juvenile plumage. It was quite likely gone a few weeks later, making for a nice fit with change, the theme for this week’s WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge.

As I mentioned previously, while this colony is growing gradually each year, Magellanic penguins have been classified as a threatened species, primarily due to oil spills which kill upwards of 20,000 adults and 22,000 juveniles each year. Climate change, which has displaced fish populations thus forcing penguins to swim considerably farther distances for food, is also a factor. In all, 12 of 17 penguin species are experiencing rapid population declines.

A few previous posts about the penguins of Martillo Island, or Isla Yécapasela, are here, here and here.

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  1. […] How Quickly They Grow – a Teenaged Penguin in Tierra del Fuego | piran café […]

  2. lensandpensbysally says

    I’m in love. How fortunate that you had this intimate experience with such a wild creature. I’m an environmentalist and their plight saddens me.

  3. […] How Quickly They Grow – a Teenaged Penguin in Tierra del Fuego | piran café […]

  4. Lynne Ayers says

    How I wish there had been chicks or teenagers when I was there. I got some nice shots but no cutie like this fellow.

    1. BobR says

      Trip to Martillo Island remains one of the best moments of my trip so far.

      1. Lynne Ayers says

        I was thrilled with my morning on the Beagle Channel – one of my favourites of our travels.

  5. babso2you says

    What a little cutie! Thank you for signing up to follow my blog! I hope that you will enjoy my posts! – B

  6. […] How Quickly They Grow – a Teenaged Penguin in Tierra del Fuego | piran café […]

  7. […] How Quickly They Grow – a Teenaged Penguin in Tierra del Fuego | piran café […]

  8. […] How Quickly They Grow – a Teenaged Penguin in Tierra del Fuego | piran café […]

  9. […] How Quickly They Grow – a Teenaged Penguin in Tierra del Fuego | piran café […]

  10. My Life Afterglow says

    So cute!!! 🙂

  11. sustainabilitea says

    I’m sure we were all thinking, “Awwwwwwwwwwwwwww.” Cute shot and what fun to have been there.

    janet

  12. […] How Quickly They Grow – a Teenaged Penguin in Tierra del Fuego | piran café […]

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