© A Magellanic penguin on a bluff on Isla de los Estados. Photo: Ulises Balza Celebrate Penguin Awareness Day on January 20th with the fabulous discovery of ‘Near Threatened’ Magellanic penguins. January 20th is Penguin Awareness Day – and so it is with perfect timing that we get news from WCS researchers. They have discovered a new colony of Magellanic penguins ( Spheniscus magellanicus ) on a remote island in Argentina. As with all too many of the planet’s creatures, the Magellanic penguin is not particularly thriving. The medium-sized penguins with the wonderfully graphic markings are listed as “Near Threatened” on IUCN’s Red List. The total population is decreasing, thanks to climate change, fishing gear entanglement, overfishing of prey species, and oil spills, among other threats. © A Magellanic penguin. (Photo: Ulises Balza) Thus far there are more than 50 known colonies of Magellanic penguins, the largest colony is in the Punta Tombo Provincial Reserve which has been a protected area for more than 50 years. WCS explains that it has been supporting long-term research and "monitoring of the Magellanic penguin and works to conserve them by helping improve the management of commercial fisheries and of offshore drilling and […]

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