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Gentoo Penguin

Pygoscelis papua

The Gentoo penguin has a Circumpolar breeding distribution and has moved southward since 2000 as the population has increased.. Gentoo penguins are more sedentary than the Chinstrap and Adelie penguin and their colonies smaller. The largest populations are in the Falkland/ Malvinas, South Georgia islands and the Antarctic Peninsula where 80% of this species is found. Although listed as Near threatened by Birdlife the increase in their numbers and their stable or growing population at most breeding colonies should make it’s’ status of least concern.  This species lays two eggs of equal size and once chickz fledge parents continue to feed the young since both parents and chicks stay close to where they bred for a few days or weeks. Nest are often are built with rocks that are often stolen from other nests. Breeding success and mate fidelity is highly variable both among locations and between years. Gentoo penguins feed inshore close to where they breed mostly on crustaceans, fish, and squid.

For more information on gentoo penguin natural history visit the Global Penguin Society at   


For more information on gentoo penguin conservation status visit the IUCN Red List page at

Pygoscelis papua (Gentoo Penguin) (

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