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King penguin census data, Gadget Gully, Macquarie Island (1993-2008)
Van Den Hoff, J. (2009) Changes in King Penguin numbers at Gadget Gully, Macquarie Island, Australian Antarctic Data Centre - CAASM Metadata (

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Availability: Creative Commons License This dataset is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

Data on the recovery of king penguin population at Macquarie Island. more

Ground counts of King Penguin Aptenodytes patagonicuseggs, chicks, fledglings and adults at Gadget Gully on Macquarie Island (1993-2008 incomplete). Counts were obtained in the field by observers at Gadget gully. During the late 19th and early 20th centuries, when blubber oil fuelled house lamps, the king penguin population at Macquarie Island was reduced from two very large (perhaps hundreds of thousands of birds) colonies to about 3000 birds. One colony, located on the isthmus when the island was discovered in 1810, was extinct by 1894 and it took about 100 years for king penguins to re-establish a viable breeding population there. Here we document this recovery. The first eggs laid at Gadget Gully on the isthmus were recorded in late February 1995 but in subsequent years egg laying took place earlier between November and February (this temporal discontinuity is a consequence of king penguin breeding behaviour). The first chick was hatched in April 1995 but the first fledging was not raised until the following breeding season in October 1996. The colony increased on average 66% per annum in the five years between 1995 and 2000. King penguins appear resilient to catastrophic population reductions, and as the island's population increases, it is likely that other previously abandoned breeding sites will be reoccupied.

Biology > Birds
Marine, Counting, PSE, Macquarie I., Aptenodytes patagonicus Miller, 1778

Geographical coverage
PSE, Macquarie I. [Marine Regions]

Temporal coverage
28 September 1993 - 1 August 2008

Taxonomic coverage
Aptenodytes patagonicus Miller, 1778 [WoRMS]

Count, Presence of biota

Australian Antarctic Division; Australian Antarctic Data Centredata creator

Related datasets
Published in:
AntOBIS: Antarctic Ocean Biodiversity Information System, more

Based on this dataset
van den Hoff, J. et al. (2009). Tipping back the balance: recolonization of the Macquarie Island isthmus by king penguins (Aptenodytes patagonicus) following extermination for human gain. Antarctic Science 21(3): 237-241.

Dataset status: Completed
Data type: Data
Data origin: Research: field survey
Metadatarecord created: 2009-05-25
Information last updated: 2015-04-21
All data in the Integrated Marine Information System (IMIS) is subject to the VLIZ privacy policy