The population of Antarctic penguins is likely to face a demographic boom due to global warming, as the shrinking surface of sea ice allows them to spend less time looking for food, say the experts from the National Institute of Polar Research in Tachikawa, Japan.
Having studied the changes in the life cycle of the most common Adélie penguins that have occurred recently, they came to an amusing conclusion - global warming, which has become a real horror story for all mankind, brings undoubted benefits to these large flightless birds that have learned to live in permafrost.
Cracks and hollows in sea ice that occur in a warmer environment provide more food opportunities, expanding their access to desired fish and krill, especially considering the fact that penguins swim four times faster than they walk.Thus, this means that in the Adélie population is more healthy, well-fed offspring will be born and the average life expectancy will increase.
«It turns out that these penguins are happier with less sea-ice,» said lead researcher Yuuki Watanabe at the National Institute of Polar Research in Tachikawa, Japan.
«This may seem counter-intuitive, but the underlying mechanism is actually quite simple.»
The study was published in the journal Science Advances.