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Christchurch, New Zealand

Maftei M.,High Arctic Gull Research Group | Russ R.,Heritage Expeditions
Marine Ornithology | Year: 2014

The Crested Auklet Aethia cristatella is a highly pelagic alcid for which non-breeding movements and distribution remain poorly understood. On 18 August 2013, in the vicinity of Cape Kekurnyi at the eastern end of the Chukotski Peninsula (66°9.2′N, 169°43.6′W), we observed an uninterrupted passage of an estimated 10 560 000 Crested Auklets over a period of four hours. At the peak of the movement, birds were passing at a rate exceeding 1 000 individuals per second. While the northward movement of Crested Auklets into the Chukchi Sea is well known, our observations indicate that birds from multiple breeding colonies congregate during the post-breeding season and travel in huge numbers to locally productive foraging areas. It also seems likely either that the global population of Crested Auklets has been previously underestimated, or that recent population increases have gone undetected.

Tidemann S.C.,Indigenous | Walleyn A.,Heritage Expeditions | Ryan J.F.,Heritage Expeditions
Australian Field Ornithology | Year: 2015

On 27-28 February 2014, at the Balleny Islands in Antarctica, penguins on two islands were observed by close approach via zodiac craft, and counts of all pelagic bird species were made from a passing ship. Most penguins on Sabrina Island and Chinstrap Islet were Adelie Penguins Pygoscelis adeliae. Percentage of Chinstrap Penguins P. antarcticus to Adelie Penguins was 7.3 on Sabrina Island and 10.7 on Chinstrap Islet. Four species-Campbell Albatross Thalassarche impavida, White-headed Petrel Pterodroma lessonii, Mottled Petrel P. inexpectata, and King Penguin Aptenodytes patagonicus-were recorded for the Balleny Islands for the first time.

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