Putz, K., Y. Ropert-Coudert, J.-B. Charrassin, and R. Wilson. 1999. Foraging Areas of King Penguins Aptenodytes patagonicus breeding at Possession Island, Southern Indian Ocean. Marine Orinthology 27:77-84.
Abstract:Between January and March 1994 and between January and June 1995 we used Global Location Sensors (GLS) to determine the feeding areas of King Penguins Aptenodytes patagonicus breeding at Possession Island, Crozet Archipalago. In both years, the preferred feeding area during summer was located about 300 km south of the island, being slightly more distant in 1995. Mean foraging trip duration was 5.7±1.1 days (n = 6) during summer 1994 and 8.9±3.7 days (n = 9) during summer 1995, respectively. During summer the travelling speed of the King Penguins studied was highest at the first and last days of the foraging trip (c. 8 km/h). During the middle days of foraging trips travelling speeds were much lower (< 5 km/h). In early winter, between late April and mid-June 1995, two King Penguins equipped with GLSs executed foraging trips with durations of 53 and 59 days, respectively. Both birds travelled beyond 60°S with maximum dis- tances to the colony of 1600 and 1800 km, respectively, and total distances covered of about 5000 km. The winter trips were characterized by alternating periods of higher and lower distances covered, indicating a highly variable feeding success at different localities. The relationships between foraging trip duration (days) and maximum distance to the colony (km) and total distance covered (km) were calculated to be maximum distance = 210 + 27 d and total distance = 340 + 85 d.