Tags: Australia, Bass Strait, Climate Change, Global Warming, Little Penguin, Ornithology, penguins, Phillip Island, Zoology
Penguins doing fine despite Global Warming
Published on July 7th, 2013
Written by: Cameron Slater
Global warming was supposed to see the end of penguins amongst other things.
In 2009 the following prediction was made in Australia:
MARK COLVIN: Scientists monitoring Australia’s most famous population of Little Penguins have had a scare, after some chicks died of starvation because their parents had to go farther afield than usual to find food.
Phillip Island’s nightly parade of the penguins is a major tourist attraction.
A biologist who works with the colony says it’s a problem which could become more common as climate change takes hold.
Four years on you’d expect that the poor wee things would be in dire straights. Turns out no.
The little penguins of Phillip Island are experiencing a baby boom.
Last summer’s breeding season was the best in a generation, a dramatic turnaround from the 1990s when either foxes were snatching the flightless birds or they were starving to death.
Research manager of the Phillip Island Nature Parks Dr Peter Dann says the rise in population is “about food”.
“These chicks are fatter, they’ve grown faster, the parents have brought back more food. The parents have been heavier than normal right through the breading seasons,” he said.
Dr Dann says it is a far cry from the 1990s, when food was scarce.
“It was even worse in 1995, when the main food they were eating during that breeding time was pilchard, and the pilchard had a huge die-off right across southern Australia to New Zealand,” he said.
“A lot of birds were actually dying of starvation and they bred very late.
“One of the curious things about all this is that when Australia’s warmer, particularly in Autumn, penguins start breeding earlier in the following Spring and they breed much better than when Bass Strait’s cooler in Autumn.”
Once again the alarmist media, complicit scientists and gullible fools are wrong.