Penguins are some of our favorite animals. With the huge amounts of attention they get in pop culture, it’s no wonder that the tuxedoed flightless birds made such a big impact on us. But as with most things that manage to find their way into our public hearts, parties will be trying to exploit them for profit. According to penguin experts, the recent study is highly exaggerated, with Adélie penguins not really threatened by iceberg.
Rome sized iceberg
According to the reports of multiple new sources following a study in Antarctica, some 150,000 Adélie penguins died after a huge iceberg cut off their access to the sea. However, according to several penguin experts, there actually isn’t any definitive proof that the penguins have actually died.
As the colony of around 150,000 birds was living in East Antarctica, an iceberg the size of Rome crashed into the glacier on which they were living, cutting off their access to the sea, forcing them to walk over 37 miles to get food.
The study further says that the colony has shrunk down to 10,000 from the original 150,000, and that the sight left behind was horrific – dead penguins, both adult and chicks and discarded eggs all over the place, along with a strange eerie silence that spoke about the colony’s decimation.
They’re tougher than they look
But penguin experts don’t really agree with the assessment made in the study; and despite the fact that they don’t outright refute what the study authors described, they say that it’s quite a normal occurrence.
First of all, when the going gets rough, most penguin colonies tend to just… leave. Just because the colony is so much smaller now, it doesn’t mean that the other birds are dead – they most likely relocated to other, nearby, thriving colonies. The ones remaining behind are probably the ones too weak or unwilling to make the move.
Second of all, penguins are apparently surrounded by the carcasses of their loved ones quite often. As the dry, freezing temperatures of the Antarctica tends to preserve most bodies by not allowing them to rot, penguins just leave them there because they really don’t have any reason to move them. Researchers at some point even found mummified seals and penguins that were hundreds of years old.
Last but not least, according to the experts disproving the study, the year 2011 saw a population of 7 million Adélie penguins in the Antarctic, making the highly unlikely deaths of around 140,000 not that big a deal.
Image source: Wikimedia