NASA Just Discovered a Supercolony of Penguins from Space

It all started when Heather Lynch, an ecology and evolution professor at Stony Brook University in New York, and Mathew Schwaller from NASA noticed some peculiar stains on satellite photos of the Danger Islands, near the tip of the Antarctic peninsula. These stains seen from space were in fact guano —  penguin droppings! Along with a team of ecologists, the two set off for an expedition to Antarctica.

Their astonishing discovery revealed a colony of 1.5 million Adélie penguins on the northern tip of the Danger Islands —  more than the entire continent of Antarctica! Read more: Strength comes in big numbers. This is good news, especially in times when climate change is severely affecting sea ice patterns which has already led to a loss of eight penguin colonies of the same breed. The Danger Islands are now identified as a crucial area for bird life, and an important breeding site for Adélie penguins.

Check out the drone footage below: 

 

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