Yellow Eyed Penguin Facts
- Most notably, but truly unfortunately, the rather stunning Yellow Eyed Penguin holds a special status. That holds true due to the lamentable fact that it now ranks as one of the rarest varieties of penguin in the world.
- But, regardless of its scant numbers, this amazing bird does have one thing working in its favor. The amazing bird actually has one of the longest natural lifespans of any related species. Individuals have the ability to live more than 20 years.
- However, few individuals succeed in reaching this age, due to a wide variety of reasons. But sadly, many of these reasons do not represent part of its natural environment. Yet these remain the same as those many species currently face.
- As a result, the animal faces two threats in particular. The primary threats that the magnificent creature faces include habitat degradation. But, it also suffers from the introduction of non-native predators.
- Finally, due to all these factors, it now has an estimated remaining population of fewer than 4,000 individuals. Quite understandably, because of this sad state of affairs, the IUCN now lists it as Endangered.
Yellow Eyed Penguin Physical Description
First of all, regardless of its rather distinctive appearance, the marvelous Yellow Eyed Penguin might not stand out in a crowd. That’s because, compared to its many relatives, it remains a roughly mid-sized penguin.
However, the animal does display a slight degree of sexual dimorphism, like many animals. In its particular case, the males of the species slightly larger than females. Also, for undetermined reasons, male also usually have a longer lifespan.
In addition, mature adults most typically attain a height measuring between 24-31 in (62-79 cm). However, weights often vary significantly, depending on the time of the year, from 6.6 – 18 lb (3-8 kg).
Furthermore, its natural coloring also draws much attention. In addition to the typical black back, it also has a pale yellowish head, a multi-colored beak. All this only serves to enhance the distinctiveness of the distinctive yellow eyes.
- Kingdom: Animalia
- Phylum: Chordata
- Class: Aves
- Order: Sphenisciformes
- Family: Spheniscidae
- Genus: Megadyptes
- Species: M. antipodes
Yellow Eyed Penguin Distribution, Habitat, and Ecology
Most importantly, the marvelous Yellow Eyed Penguin, unfortunately, has an extremely restricted and rather isolated natural habitat range. In this manner as well, the fascinating bird mirrors some of its related kin.
This holds true due to the fact that it remains endemic to only specific portions of New Zealand. This area includes South Island, and also the bodies of land among the Auckland, Stewart, and Campbell Islands.
Further, this amazing avian typically nests in a habitat that might surprise many people. In fact, it most commonly prefers to make its home in regions of either scrub or forest. It also lives on gentle slopes or the shore itself, in small bays or headlands.
Similar to other related species, its diet also consists mainly of small fish caught near the seafloor. But this amazing flightless bird commonly augments its part of its diet with the occasional small cephalopod.
Finally, mankind created a special reserve for this amazing species in 2007. This special area includes a portion of its native nesting area, in an effort to assist in its preservation. To date, the benefit of these efforts remains undetermined.