Galapagos Penguin (Lat. SPheniscus Mendiculus is a representative.
Galapagos penguin is recognized as the smallest species of floating penguins: the weight of this bird does not exceed 2.5 kg, and growth is about 50 cm; And this is the only penguin that nests in a tropical climatic zone.
This bird is distinguished by a black color of the head with a characteristic white strip around the head, which is a distinctive feature of all the points of the penguins. White in this bird are the chest and stomach, which are interspersed with black inserts. And her beak and paws are black. This type of penguins differ in the presence of molting process twice a year.
Birds are not characterized by sexual dimorphism: both females and males of this species are painted the same, there are only small differences in size.
This type of penguins is unique among other penguins, primarily in that its habitat is not the Antarctic and submanic belt, but the Galapagos Islands that are directly at the equator. These areas are characterized by high temperatures, from 18 to 30 degrees.
In front, these birds are white, and a white strip is from the throat upward to the head, and ending in the eyes, in the area of the black head. The connection and the area around the eyes of Penguin differ in a pinkish-yellow shade.
Galapagos penguins live in a hot climate and are forced to escape from the heat, plunging into the water, or taking a characteristic pose (spread wings and slope), which helps to protect the body; or simply spraying with water.
It is for this reason that most of their time the penguins are in the water, hunting for small (up to 15 cm) fish and crustaceans, knocking down in flocks. This type of penguins is very dependent on the climate: when the ocean is warming, these birds face a lack of food, and begin to feed without a pack.
When the temperature decreases to the indicator about 24 degrees, penguins are capable. Fortunately, at the equator they are not limited by seasons, so each pair is able to have up to three broods throughout the year.
These birds are distinguished by monogamy, and they build nests at a distance of about 50 meters from the ocean line, for which holes are able to dig or arrange between clefts. Two eggs that the female laid with a break of several days are trimmed with a couple for almost 40 days. And for another month, the kids remain in the nest after the birth: parents feed them and guard until the penguin is getting drunk (two more months). This type of penguin does not form a nursery.
Where it lives
The main number of birds of this species, as the name, lives on Galapagossi, and 90% of the penguins chose the island of Ferdinanda, as well as the western territories of Isabel Island,. If we talk about other islands, then only small populations of this species are noticed there.
What they eat
The main diet of penguins is various types of fish and small crustaceans. In the daytime, the penguins hunt in the cool waters of the Cromwell flow, and in the dark they are on land so as not to be substituted under the scorching sun. These birds prefer to choose a flock of small fish (as a rule, it is Keffal and Sardins) and small shrimp. For hunting, birds are located a few kilometers from the nesting places, which is associated with the presence of cool currents in which you can find many nutrients.
This type of penguins is defined in the Red Book as a germination of disappearance. Presumably the number of the population is about five thousand individuals, and a little less than half a century ago a sharp decrease in the total population of about 70% was recorded. Today you can observe a slow, but the restoration of this unique population.
The amount of food plays great importance for this species of birds: if the fish is not enough, then the penguin is fasting. A variety of predators that destroy the nests also have the influence on the population.
Penguins begin to multiply when the ambient temperature reaches optimal indicators of 25 degrees; And such a climate contributes to the development of not only this species of birds, but also a large number of predators hunting for them (sharks, seals, cats), and snakes, predatory birds, cats are in wait for them on land.
Limitative factors for this type can also be recognized as human activity that affects the environment, including pollution, depletion of food, garbage and various diseases.
This species of birds is capable of water under water for quite a long time, almost two minutes, and easily reach a depth of about 15 m. Their life expectancy is quite long, about 20 years.