Tragic year for colony
A COLONY of more than 18,000 pairs of Adelie penguins in Antarctica has had a catastrophic breeding season with just two chicks surviving, wildlife experts say.
Scientists blamed unusually extensive sea ice late in the summer, despite low ice early in the season, which meant the penguins had to travel further for food, causing the chicks to starve.
Conservation group WWF said the devastating breeding season showed waters off east Antarctica must be protected from fishing fleets, which made it harder for penguins to find their krill.
A proposal for a new protected area for the waters off east Antarctica will be considered next week.
WWF said a marine protected area, which would prevent krill fishing, would help secure a future for the wildlife of east Antarctica.