Foraging ranges and movements of jackass penguins (Spheniscus demersus) established through radio telemetry



In order to study the movements and activities at sea of jackass penguins rearing chicks, a radio telemetry study was undertaken. Twenty five transmitters were attached to breeding adult penguins at their nest sites. These penguins were tracked for a total of 414 hours using a system of antennae on a motor–boat, the island and land–based stations. The foraging paths, foraging duration, foraging distances and swimming speeds were studied. The penguins' foraging patterns were similar; they generally left the island at night and travelled towards their foraging area, actively foraging from first light until they swam back to the island. The foraging durations and distances varied, as did the swimming speeds, according to availability of food.