March of the Fossil Penguins

Fossil penguin discoveries and research

Penguins on the Prowl

Critter cams are revealing the efficiency of Adélie penguins in picking off prey.  A recent study by Dr. Yuuki Watanabe and Dr. Akinori Takahashi involved attaching small cameras and speed monitors to penguins in order to see firsthand how they forage.  The penguins turned out to be remarkably skilled hunters, gathering prey with unerring accuracy and breathtaking speed.  In dense prey swarms, they can capture two krill per second.  One bird gobbled up over 200  krill in about an hour. And it turned out that they can be sneaky, using the ice as a barrier to trap fish. It is impressive to see how rapidly the penguins move their heads, and it makes me think about their brain structure.

Reference: Watanabe, Y. and A.Takahashi. In Press 2013. Linking animal-borne video to accelerometers reveals prey capture variability. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Written by Dan Ksepka

February 19, 2013 at 1:53 pm

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  1. Your youtube is broken!! This one woroks through and it is soooo cool to watch it.


    February 19, 2013 at 10:32 pm

  2. I had no problem watching the video, which was pretty cool.

    Paul D Brinkman

    February 20, 2013 at 11:00 am

  3. Thanks Keci – I saw the video link was not working so i added another one. Paul seems to like it!

    Dan Ksepka

    February 20, 2013 at 10:15 pm

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