Adélie and Chinstrap Penguins: Their Potential as Monitors of the Southern Ocean Marine Ecosystem
Analysis of annual variability in the parameters recommended by CCAMLR for ecosystem monitoring revealed considerable variation among the parameters for which we have sufficient data to make an assessment. Interpretation of the observed variability was greatly enhanced when several parameters were considered simultaneously. In concert, the parameters should be useful for assessing perturbations in the Antarctic ecosystem. The choice of Adélie and chinstrap penguins as key indicator species seems an excellent one, given their very different responses to the highly variable conditions in the Antarctic Peninsula region, their species-specific breeding patterns, and the asynchrony between their respective breeding seasons. If a time series of data becomes available, it may be possible to differentiate between fishery-induced and natural perturbations in the ecosystem.
KeywordsBreeding Success South Shetland Island Chinstrap Penguin Overwinter Survival Antarctic Peninsula Region
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