As regular CFZ-watchers will know, for some time Corinna has been doing a column for Animals & Men and a regular segment on On The Track... particularly about out-of-place birds and rare vagrants. There seem to be more and more bird stories from all over the world hitting the news these days so, to make room for them all - and to give them all equal and worthy coverage - she has set up this new blog to cover all things feathery and Fortean.

Wednesday, 19 June 2013

Magellanic Penguins Devour 2 Million Tons of Seafood Yearly

South American Magellanic penguins gobble down 1.5 million tons of silverside fish, squid and small, oily fish such as sprat every year. If all of the world's 1.3 million Magellanic penguins are as voracious as their Patagonian counterparts, then the black-and-white birds may be bolting down 2 million tons of seafood every year, according to a study published Dec. 12, 2012, in the journal PLOS ONE. The study adds to increasing evidence that seabirds consume larger quantities of food than previously estimated, the authors report.

Wiggle loggers tracked diving penguins from four colonies in Argentina to determine how much prey they captured. Wiggles during dives indicate the number of prey nabbed by each penguin. The total haul was 87 percent more than the 820,000 tons of commercial catches for the same seafood species (sprat, squid, anchovy, etc.), LatinAmericanScience.org reported.


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