Thousands of penguin chicks are dying due to climate change
Emperor penguins are famous for their huge size. They are called the emperor of penguins. Among the living penguin species, emperor penguins, native to Antarctica, are tall and heavy-built.
These penguins are 100 cm long and weigh 22 to 45 kg. The scientific name of this penguin is Aptenodytes forsteri. Emperor penguins can swim at a speed of 6-9 kilometers per hour in water.
Various species of penguins have been under threat for many years due to climate change. Emperor penguins are most at risk. A big storm passed over these penguin chicks last year.
Because of these thousands of emperor penguin chicks die, emperor penguin chicks do not have waterproof feathers. That’s why sea ice is quite dangerous for them.
Researchers report that thousands of emperor penguin chicks died in 2022 in West Antarctica. They die off mainly due to the loss of sea ice. Scientists have said that analyzing data from artificial
In the past two years, Antarctic sea ice has declined to a record extent. Satellite images from 2022 reveal the effects of ice loss. Peter Fretwell, a geographer, studies the melting of Antarctic ice.
He and his colleagues have not yet measured the impact of ice loss damage. They studied the melting of Bellingshausen sea ice near West Antarctica. This area is home to more emperor penguins.
The researchers analyzed data during the breeding season. Emperor penguins live in five colonies, they said. Five colonies occur on Rothschild Island, Verdy Inlet, Smiley Island, Bryan Peninsula, and Frogner Point.
Four colonies were damaged due to melting ice. All emperor penguin chicks in these four colonies died. A paper on that effect is published in the Communications Earth and Environment section of the journal Nature.
Emperor penguins depend on stable sea ice during the breeding season. Fretwell, a British Antarctic surveyor at the University of Cambridge in the United Kingdom, stated that the breeding season of Antarctic animals occurs from April to January. When hatchlings hatch, they do not have waterproof feathers.
Feathering is a process that takes place after birth, during which feathers are shed and replaced. Before some colonies fled, the sea ice broke up in 2022. Animals or birds like penguins cannot survive without waterproof feathers.
More than 10,000 pairs of emperor penguins were living in the region. It is believed that only 850 chicks survived the disaster. There are 62 emperor penguin colonies across Antarctica
According to Annie Schmidt, a marine ecologist at Point Blue Conservation Science in Petaluma, California, penguins can recover quickly if they don’t breed. Penguins in some colonies are going through bad times. The Brant Ice Shelf in Antarctica is home to the world’s second-largest emperor
For three years from 2016 to 2018, emperor penguins had breeding problems. Due to the storm, the sea ice breaks up there. The colony of penguins was lost due to the disaster. Penguins are under threat as a whole with repeated incidents like this. Global warming is increasing.
A changing climate and melting sea ice could cut emperor penguin populations by more than half by 2100. Unless global warming is reduced, the fate of emperor penguins cannot be changed.