Wildlife update

Page 1 of 2 Next
This week at Macquarie Island: 16 September 2011

The island is really coming to life as spring is upon us. Male elephant seals have been coming up on the beaches roaring at each other and claiming territories for some time. The females started coming up last week, and the first pups were seen on the isthmus on Sunday, with two being seen at Razorback West early Sunday morning. As more females haul out every day, we expect more arrivals daily. Nothing is wasted as skuas hang around constantly, cleaning up spilt milk and fighting over the scraps of afterbirth.

The gentoos are getting spring fever too, several are on eggs and more are in the process of making eggs with a little gentoo loving. They continue to work on their nests, collecting materials, tidying and moving bits and pieces around.  

The king penguin chicks continue to grow. A recent landslide just above the colony fortunately did not cause any injuries, though giant petrels continue to take chicks whenever they have the chance. Life is harsh and in the bad weather not all the chicks survive. The king parents return regularly to feed the chicks. Finding their chick amongst the crèche is the first hurdle.

Newborn elephant seal pup
Newborn elephant seal pup
(Photo: Eve M.)
Spilt milk
Spilt milk
(Photo: Eve M.)
Pup
Pup
(Photo: Eve M.)
Male elephant seal roaring
Male elephant seal roaring
(Photo: Eve M.)
Gentoo penguin greeting
Gentoo penguin greeting
(Photo: Eve M.)
Gentoo love
Gentoo love
(Photo: Eve M.)
Collecting nesting material
Collecting nesting material
(Photo: Eve M.)
King penguin chick
King penguin chick
(Photo: Eve M.)
Adult feeding a chick
Adult feeding a chick
(Photo: Eve M.)
One that didn't make it
One that didn't make it
(Photo: Eve M.)
Chick in creche
Chick in creche
(Photo: Eve M.)
Select story:
This page was last modified on 16 September 2011.