Erect-crested penguin Facts

Erect-crested penguin Facts
Erect-crested penguin is type of medium-sized penguin that belongs to the group of crested penguins (seven morphologically similar species). It can be found on the islands around New Zealand and along the coasts of Australia. Erect-crested penguin inhabits remote locations, which people rarely visit. It spends part of its life in the water, and other part on the rocky cliffs and beaches. Population of erect-crested penguins has declined for 50% in the past 45 years without clear reason (probably due to limited breeding areas). Since this trend is likely to continue, erect-crested penguin is classified as endangered.
Interesting Erect-crested penguin Facts:
Erect-crested penguin can reach 20 to 28 inches in height and 5 to 13 pounds of weight. Males are slightly larger than females.
Erect-crested penguin has black plumage on the back and white plumage on the belly (it looks like it is wearing a tuxedo). Erect-crested penguin has yellow, stiff and erect feathers above the eyes, hence the name "crested". Unlike in other types of crested penguins, crest of erect-crested penguin can be positioned low or high.
Erect-crested penguin has long, slender, brown-orange beak, graceful, elegant body and short tail.
Legs of erect-crested penguin are positioned far back on the body. Aside for walking, they are used for hopping (when penguin needs to avoid obstacles on the rough terrains).
Erect-crested penguin is a carnivore. Its diet is based on fish, krill and squids. It often hunts in a group of 5 or more penguins and travels hundreds of miles to find food.
Erect-crested penguin has spikes on the tongue and back of the mouth which facilitate holding and swallowing of prey in one piece.
Erect-crested penguin spends winter in the sub-Antarctic Ocean zone.
Erect-crested penguin lives in large colonies. It communicates with other penguins via various sounds and by touch.
Erect-crested penguin migrates to Antipodes Islands and Bounty Islands to mate.
Males produce various sounds, swing their heads, trumpet and quiver to attract females. They often fight using their bills and flippers due to fierce competition for the nesting sites.
Pair of erect-crested penguins constructs nest on the steep rocky terrains that are not easily accessible for predators. They build nest out of stones, grass and mud.
Female lays two eggs during October. First egg is two times smaller than the second egg and it is usually lost or discarded before hatching. Both male and female take part in the incubation of eggs which lasts 35 days.
During the first 3 to 4 weeks after hatching, male guards the nest, while females collects food for the chick(s). Male doesn't eat during this period.
Young erect-crested penguin becomes ready to swim and hunt on its own between February and March (shortly after moulting).
Erect-crested penguin can survive 15 to 20 years in the wild.

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