Falkland Islands 2012
Adult Gentoos reach a height of 20–36 inches, making them the third largest species of penguin after the two giant species,
the Emperor Penguin and the King Penguin.
Males have a maximum weight of about 19 pounds just before molting, and a minimum weight of about 10.8 pounds just before
mating. For females the maximum weight is 18 pounds just before moulting, but their weight drops to as little as 10 pounds
when guarding the chicks in the nest. Gentoo penguins are the fastest underwater swimming penguins, reaching speeds of 22
miles per hour..
Gentoos live mainly on crustaceans such as krill, with fish making up only about 15% of the diet. However, they are
opportunistic feeders, and around the Falklands are known to take roughly equal proportions of fish
As we arrived in the Falkland Islands, the Gentoo chicks were getting close to being as big as their parents. Below, a parent
feeding its chick. Note the red krill.
Something we observed when we arrived was some parents feeding their chicks and then making the chicks chase them in a
game of tag. This type of behaviour increased during our stay. Gentoos can run very fast, so it was funny to watch them run
through the colony knocking over other penguins. It appeared to us that the parents were making the chicks strengthen their
muscles since they would soon be abandoning the chicks.
The chicks were curious. Below, some chicks walk over and check out Jackie..
Likewise, while Elston was taking pictures of some King Penguins, he was soon visited by Gentoo chicks.
One investigated the
Another bit his coat.
Another checked out his
Below, another group of Gentoo chicks pay Elston a visit.
In the evening, masses
of Gentoo returned
from the day at sea.
This long line of returning Gentoo walking more than a mile lasted for more than three hours.
This beach was a great meeting place for Gentoo penguins.
Below, Gentoo Penguins frockling and bathing in the water.