Penguins

Spheniscidae

Penguins are confined to the southern hemisphere. Fourteen species of these mostly ocean-dwelling, flightless birds have been recorded in Australia, most as vagrants. The Little Penguin Eudyptula minor is the only species to breed on the Australian mainland, Tasmania and coastal islands. The Royal Penguin Eudyptes schlegeli is believed to only breed on Macquarie Island, whereas breeding populations of the King Penguin Aptenodytes patagonicus, Gentoo Penguin Pygoscelis papua, Macaroni Penguin E. chrysolophus, Southern Rockhopper Penguin E. chrysocome are found within Australia as well as internationally.

King Penguin

Aptenodytes patagonicus An impressive crestless penguin, standing at a height of around 95 cm and can travel distances of over 450 km when foraging (mainly for fish) at sea. It is easily recognised purely by its size, the largest of the penguins to breed on Macca, and second only in size to the Emperor Penguin A. forsteri , which is a rare vagrant to the island. It has a black head and face,...
Little Penguin

Little Penguin

This small (32 to 34 cm), blue and white penguin is a common sight along the coastline of southern Australia, from Perth, Western Australia, to about Nelsons Bay, New South Wales.  Spending the daylight hours at sea, it awaits the cover of night before coming ashore to roost in rock crevices and burrows. On Phillip Island, the nightly “penguin parades” have become a tourist attraction. The Litt...

Royal Penguin

Eudyptes schlegeli This species is endemic to Macca, although vagrants do turn up as vagrants over a wide area and their exact winter movements (when much of the 7 month period is spent foraging for fish and crustaceans long distances offshore) are largely unknown. Macca (and the local smaller islets of Bishop and Clerk) is however, the only place where the 1.5 to 2 million strong breeding population...