Magellanov or Magellan Penguin (Lat. Spheniscus magellanicus) is a representative of the nonaltered diving birds belonging to the genus of sculptural penguins.
Magellanov Penguin got his name thanks to the famous sailor Fernan Magellan, who just noticed these penguins, opening their habitats in 1520. Adults of this species reach a size of about 80 cm, with a weight up to six kg. The back of the bird is coal, and the bird is bright white in front, with this species with one or more strips on a white neck. The beak and paws of birds are grayish, possessing a reddish tint. The plumage above the eyes to the very base of the beak has a slightly noticeable pink color.
This type of penguins, like all others, is an uncleaning. Magellanov Penguin has a significant resemblance to the external design with another species gumboldt penguins, but Magellanov Penguin has two white stripes in the neck, and the cheeks are decorated with white marks.
Where they live
The habitat of Magellanov Penguin is the rocky shores of the Falkland Islands: as a rule, it is the Patagon coast, Chile, Argentina, Uruguay and even the territory of the south of Brazil. Researchers discovered this type of penguins even on the territory of Rio de Janeiro and north, up to the south of Peru. In addition, this bird can be found on the coast of South America until the very south Chile.
The total population, according to researchers, is about two million pairs.
What they eat
As a rule, Magellanov Penguin eats, in approximately the same quantity, preferring to consume kril, squid, karakatits and other cephalopods, without neglecting and small fish.
Penguins prefer to move and feed on significant flocks, and when searching for food, they can plunge to a depth of 100 meters, but prefer to feed in smaller places, plunging to a depth of about 20-50 meters.
The time that the birds spend on food is correlated with the climatic conditions of the environment: for example, in Chili, an adult bird can spend about 18 hours to search for feed for chicks, and in the Folklands this time reaches the indicator of 35 hours.
It is noteworthy that during the cultivation of offspring, Penguins prefer to eat in the territory within about 30 km from the field of nesting, but the birds are forced to eat much further in the folklands, since this is due to the development of commercial fishing.
This type of penguin is on land of islands for propagation by the beginning of autumn, in September. The territory of their nests is made up of holes dug up at a depth of up to 30 cm. Females are ready to reproduce at the age of 4 years, while males should reach five years. After digging new holes or repairing existing ones (approximately this happens in midOctober), birds begin to lay eggs. Typically, in the laying of this penguin there are several eggs (a mass of 125 g), which are postponed with an interval of four days. Penguin’s forcing the process of for more than 40 days, both the male and the female replace each other in this process every 20 days, while the other partner feeds at great distances from the nests (up to half a thousand kilometers from the nests).
By the time the first month of life, the kids are already able to take small walks outside the nest, which is protected both from predators and from bad weather.
It is unusual that at the entrance to the hole or for negotiations with neighbors, Penguin is able to make sharp unpleasant sounds, such that they even received the local nickname “Donkey”.
The life expectancy of Magellanov Penguin in natural conditions is approximately a little less than about 20 years, and in captivity this indicator can reach even 25 years. The natural enemies in the marine environment are sea predators sharks, killer whales, sea seals and lions, as well as birds of prey (seagulls, shimniki) who hunt for young people and penguin eggs.
The penguins colonies in the Magellan Strait for centuries have been raided by indigenous people of the Indians, but the population was stable. However, in the 20th century, the numerous raids of Europeans began, thanks to which about 15 thousand birds annually annually were destroyed on one island (Magdalena). And today a special national park has been created on this island. But the population has not changed much, and this is both to collect the eggs of local and crowds of tourists.
To date, the number of these birds is about two million pairs, and this species has a status in the Red Book, equivalent to being under threat.