Sunday Sketch: Long Distance Penguins

Does your long distance relationship have you pining for your partner? Well, at least you aren’t a southern rockhopper penguin (Eudyptes chrysocome). These marine birds mate for life, but don’t spend much time together other than during the mating season, which is only 20-30 days long. Talk about difficult travel logistics: GPS trackers show that penguins have overlapping wintering habitats, but because males and females show up to a nesting site at different times, it may be more work to find each other after the mating season, rather than just meeting up again the next year.

SS-KChudeau Penguin

Sketch and fact contributed by Karli Chudeau

Source: Thiebot, J.B., Bost, C.A., Dehnhard, N., Demongin, L., Eens, M., Lepoint, G., Cherel, Y. & Poisbleau, M. (2015). Mates but not sexes differ in migratory niche in a monogamous penguin species. Biology Letters, 11, 1-4. DOI: 10.1098/rsbl.2015.0429

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