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Tipping back the balance: recolonization of the Macquarie Island isthmus by king penguins (Aptenodytes patagonicus) following extermination for human gain

van den Hoff, John, McMahon, Clive R. and Field, Iain (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.

Document type: Journal Article
Citation counts: Scopus Citation Count Cited 4 times in Scopus Article | Citations

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IRMA ID 79264438xPUB25
Title Tipping back the balance: recolonization of the Macquarie Island isthmus by king penguins (Aptenodytes patagonicus) following extermination for human gain
Author van den Hoff, John
McMahon, Clive R.
Field, Iain
Journal Name Antarctic Science
Publication Date 2009
Volume Number 21
Issue Number 3
ISSN 0954-1020   (check CDU catalogue open catalogue search in new window)
Scopus ID 2-s2.0-68349157591
Start Page 237
End Page 241
Total Pages 5
Place of Publication Cambride, U.K
Publisher Cambridge University Press
HERDC Category C1 - Journal Article (DEST)
Abstract 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.
Keywords breeding cycle
intrinsic change
sub-Antarctic
DOI http://dx.doi.org/10.1017/S0954102009001898   (check subscription with CDU E-Gateway service for CDU Staff and Students  check subscription with CDU E-Gateway in new window)


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