Pygoscelis penguin diets on King George Island, South Shetland Islands, with a special focus on the krill Euphausia superba

Anna Panasiuk , Justyna Wawrzynek-Borejko , Aleksandra Musiał , Małgorzata Korczak-Abshire

Abstract

In the krill-based ecosystem of the Antarctic, fluctuations in the distribution and abundance of Euphausia superba may have strong impacts on predator populations; thus, it is crucial to observe the feeding ecology of Antarctic predators, especially in the light of climate change and increasing human pressure. We determined the composition of euphausiid species in diet samples collected from Adélie (Pygoscelis adeliae), chinstrap (Pygoscelis antarcticus) and gentoo (Pygoscelis papua) penguins on King George Island (South Shetlands Islands) during a breeding season. For all three penguin species, euphausiids (mainly E. superba) represented almost the entirety of researched stomach samples (i.e. 99.9% in the case of Adélie and chinstrap penguins), while gentoo penguins also proved to feed on fish (99.4% krill; 0.5% fish). Analysed material differed in the size of eaten E. superba specimens, with the smallest crustaceans consumed by Adélie penguins. Furthermore, we found differences in the ratio of consumed krill and krill size. Such disparities may be a result of sex-based differences and slight differences in feeding areas between the birds. Additionally, we noted some fragments of plastic debris in the investigated penguin diet samples.
Author Anna Panasiuk (FOG / IO / DMPR)
Anna Panasiuk,,
- Division of Marine Plankton Research
, Justyna Wawrzynek-Borejko (FOG / IO / DMPR)
Justyna Wawrzynek-Borejko,,
- Division of Marine Plankton Research
, Aleksandra Musiał (FOG / IO)
Aleksandra Musiał,,
- Institute of Oceanography
, Małgorzata Korczak-Abshire
Małgorzata Korczak-Abshire,,
-
Journal seriesAntarctic Science, ISSN 0954-1020, e-ISSN 1365-2079, (N/A 70 pkt)
Issue year2020
Vol32
No1
Pages21-28
Publication size in sheets0.5
Keywords in EnglishAntarctic ecosystem, euphausia superba, ingested plastics, pygoscelis, sex-based differences
ASJC Classification1105 Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics; 1907 Geology; 1910 Oceanography
DOIDOI:10.1017/S0954102019000543
Languageen angielski
Score (nominal)70
Score sourcejournalList
ScoreMinisterial score = 70.0, 06-02-2020, ArticleFromJournal
Publication indicators Scopus SNIP (Source Normalised Impact per Paper): 2018 = 0.781; WoS Impact Factor: 2018 = 1.653 (2) - 2018=1.548 (5)
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