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Antarctic Album: Chinstrap Penguins of Deception Island

Sea Ice

Sea ice around Deception Island

(Image credit: Andres Barbosa)

Sea ice around the Antarctic's Deception Island. "Actually, in the 90's it was thought that the climate change would favor the chinstrap penguin, because this species prefers sea waters without ice unlike the Adelie penguin which prefers the ice pack," study researcher Andres Barbosa told LiveScience. The sea-ice decline in the winter, however, has become so big that it is now impacting krill populations, said Barbosa, of the National Museum of Natural Sciences in Madrid.

Icy Incubation

A chinstrap penguin nesting in the snow.

(Image credit: Andres Barbosa)

A chinstrap penguin nesting in the snow.

Saving Chinstraps

Chinstrap penguin colony in Deception Island.

(Image credit: Andres Barbosa)

But Barbosa says the chinstraps aren't a lost cause. "This is an example of how the human activity far from the poles can affect the live at thousands of kilometers far from our homes," Barbosa told LiveScience. "Therefore, a more responsible use of the energy and the fossil fuels is necessary to preserve the planet and then the Antarctica."

Penguin Protection

Chinstrap penguin colony in Deception Island.

(Image credit: Andres Barbosa)

In addition, he said, to protect the organisms that call the Antarctic home we need to reduce human impact by reducing overfishing, tourism and even research activity.

Jeanna Bryner

Jeanna is the editor-in-chief of Live Science. Previously, she was an assistant editor at Scholastic's Science World magazine. Jeanna has an English degree from Salisbury University, a master's degree in biogeochemistry and environmental sciences from the University of Maryland, and a graduate science journalism degree from New York University. She has worked as a biologist in Florida, where she monitored wetlands and did field surveys for endangered species. She also received an ocean sciences journalism fellowship from Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution.