Some time ago, Melomys Rubicola, a small rodent was the first mammal officially declared extinct due to climate change. Now, according to researchers, both the emperor penguins and the king penguins may extinct due to climate change, too.
Studies on the climate change in Antarctica offer gloomy predictions regarding penguins
If there will not be taken any measures against climate change, the king penguins species will be in serious danger. And relocation might not be a solution for them, regrettably.
According to a research published in 2017 in the journal Biological Conservation and conducted by the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute (WHOI), the 54 colonies of the emperor penguins that exist today will face a devastating decline in their number by the end of this century due to the melt of the ice they live on.
The researchers believe that the emperor penguins populations will decline by 40-99% by the year of 2,100.
King penguins are on the brink of extinction
According to a recent study, the close relatives of the emperor penguins, the king penguins may extinct due to climate change, too.
King penguins are not living on ice, as their relatives, the emperor penguins, do. They live on sandy islands in the Southern Ocean of Antarctica and feed with krill, squids, and lanternfish because they swim up to 300 miles to find food.
Due to climate change the fish food the king penguins feed on will move closer to the South Pole, and, if so, the king penguins will not have the ability to swim that far to feed.
Researchers expect the king penguins to migrate, otherwise, approximately 70% of them will die. However, there are no signs in that direction, yet. Even more, king penguin relocation will force them to compete with other species for territory and food, which may also be troublesome for them.
As the king penguins may extinct due to climate change their only chance of survival is in our hands. We should be aware that our own environmental carelessness may cause the death of so many species of plants and animals, thus, we should do something about it.