The Green Island Of The Penguins

When penguins come to mind (and for us when don’t they?), the picture most folks are bound to think up is the desolate white expanse of Antarctica. But, we know that penguins live in many various ecosystems throughout the Southern Hemisphere, including a large penguin population on Australia’s lush green Macquarie Island.

04 Dec 2009, Macquarie Island, Tasmania, Australia --- King penguin colony on Macquarie Island in Australia --- Image by © Nick Rains/Corbis

King penguin colony on Macquarie Island in Australia

Only 20 miles long, this narrow slice of land lies isolated more than 900 miles south of Australia, but boasts a diverse ecosystem with large multi-species penguin populations, seals and albatrosses.

04 Dec 2009, Sandy Bay, Hobart, Tasmania, Australia --- Royal penguins and Southern elephant seals at Sandy Bay on Macquarie Island --- Image by © Nick Rains/Corbis

Royal penguins and Southern elephant seals at Sandy Bay on Macquarie Island

The penguin population was hunted to near extinction in the early 20th century, when penguins were prized for their blubber. But conservation measures enacted in the 1960s and, more recently, UNESCO World Heritage inscription in 1997 have helped to protect this island’s unique ecosystem and its vulnerable inhabitants.

Royal Penguin (Eudyptes schlegeli) group walking to colony past Macquarie Island Cabbage (Stilbcarpa polaris) both endemic to Macquarie Island, Australia

Royal Penguin (Eudyptes schlegeli) group walking to colony past Macquarie Island Cabbage (Stilbcarpa polaris) both endemic to Macquarie Island, Australia

Advertisements

Tags: , , , ,

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s


%d bloggers like this: