Humboldt penguin Facts

Humboldt penguin Facts
Humboldt penguin is type of penguin of medium size. It can be found on the coastal parts of Peru and Chile. Humboldt penguin spends most of the time on the sea. It visits rocky coasts and islands only to take a rest and reproduce. Humboldt penguins were hunted as a source of meat, oil, skin and eggs in the past. Even though they are protected by law today, number of Humboldt penguins continues to decrease due to lack of food, climate changes, habitat destruction and accidental entrapment in the fishing nets. With 3.300 to 12.000 breeding couples left in the wild, Humboldt penguin is classified as vulnerable.
Interesting Humboldt penguin Facts:
Humboldt penguin can reach 22 to 26 inches in height and 8 to 13 pounds of weight. Males are slightly larger than females.
Humboldt penguin has two layers of feathers that provide insulation from the cold and prevent soaking of skin in the water. Humboldt penguin has blackish-grey plumage on the back and tail and white plumage on the front side of the body. It has black face framed with white feathers and black, horseshoe-shaped band on the chest that stretches toward the legs.
Humboldt penguin has large head, strong black bill with pink fleshy base, streamlined body, powerful flippers and webbed feet with claws which facilitate climbing on the rocks.
Humboldt penguin is a carnivore. Its diet is based on the small fish (such as anchovies and sardines), squids and krill.
Humboldt penguin can reach the speed of 20 to 30 miles per hour, and dive to a depth of 492 feet to find food. It has excellent eyesight which facilitates detection of food and predators.
Humboldt penguin is named after the cold ocean current, known as Humboldt current (discovered by German explorer Alexander von Humboldt), that is typical for the natural habitat of this species of penguin (west coast of South America).
Humboldt penguin drinks salt water and uses supraorbital glands to eliminate excess salt from the body.
Humboldt penguin lives in large colonies.
Humboldt penguins use various sounds for communication.
Natural enemies of Humboldt penguins on the land are foxes, wild dogs and caracaras. Sharks, leopard seals and killer whales prey on Humboldt penguins in the ocean.
Mating season of Humboldt penguins takes place all year round.
Female lays 2 eggs in a shallow burrow in the sand or guano, or in the crevices of rocks. Both parents take part in the incubation of eggs during a period of 40 days.
Chicks rarely leave their nest before they fledge, at the age of 12 week. When food is scarce, parents provide food only for the stronger chick (weaker chick dies).
Humboldt penguins reach sexual maturity at the age of 3 years.
Humboldt penguin can survive 15 to 20 years in the wild and 30 years in the captivity.

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