Critical review on anthropogenic environmental changes and the effects that this may have had on Emperor penguin populations in Antarctica.
Degree GrantorUniversity of Canterbury
Degree LevelPostgraduate Certificate
Degree NamePostgraduate Certificate in Antarctic Studies
This literature review takes into consideration of different aspects of reporting, which include theuse of; books, journals, online articles and published scientific articles, to get the overall feelingon people's attitudes on environmental change and its effect on Emperor penguin populations inAntarctica. Emperor penguins (Aptenodytes forsteri) are the largest of all penguins and it isthought that these ice-obligate species are particularly susceptible to environmental changes inthe southern ocean conditions. The Emperor penguins due to specialised adaptations is able tosurvive the extreme weather conditions of Antarctica, and there are concerns that with a rise inatmospheric temperatures the sea-ice is melting and will cause extinction to many coloniesreducing their total population. There has been a report of an Emperor penguin colony utilisingfloating ice shelves during years when sea-ice formed much later than usual. This new habitwould appear to be the answer, excepting the rising atmospheric temperature combined withrising sea water temperatures has already claimed part of the Larsen Ice Shelf. Anotheroppressing factor is their food source mainly in the form of krill becoming subject to be seriouslyaffected by rise in temperature, which is causing limitations of the available surface area of theunderside of the sea-ice for algae. Commercial fisheries are now targeting the Emperor penguinsfood source the krill and squid, putting extra pressures on their survival.
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