Adélie Penguin (Pygoscelis Adeliae)

Adelie Penguins

Found in the small coastal islands of the Antarctic continent, Adélie penguins are the smallest and most common penguin species in the region. Among all the 17 species, Adélie penguins belong to the two species that can be found on the mainland.

In this page, we’ll explore Adelie penguin facts, the IUCN status, anatomy, diet, predators, life-span, how they sound, a good video documentary & more.

Biological Classification

Kingdom Order Family Genus Species
Animalia Sphenisciformes Spheniscidae Pygoscelis Pygoscelis Adeliae

Adélie Penguin Habitat


IUCN Status: Least ConcernAdélie penguins found in the coastline of East Antartica land and ocean. According to 2014 survey, the population has increased by 50% compared to 20 years earlier. They breed from October to February on the shores of Antartic continent.

Adélie Penguin Anatomy


Adelie Penguin

  • The maximum height that they can go into is 71 cm and weigh up to 6 kg.
  • Regarding physical appearance, this species is easily distinguished because of having a white belly and crest, a blue-black back which resembles a tuxedo.
  • Adélie penguins have a prominent white ring around their eyes.
  • This penguin species is also characterized by having pink feet that are strong enough to aid the penguin in climbing rocky cliffs.

Adélie Penguin Diet


Adélie penguin’s primary food source is Antartic Krill fishes (Ice Krill, Sea Krill). They also prey on Antartic silverfish, Squids, and Jellyfish. Their diet preferences are similar to the yellow-eyed penguin and Magellanic penguin species.

Adelie Penguin Predators


The main predators of Adélie penguin are Antartic Fur Seal, Baleen Whales, Killer Whales. Also seabirds such as Skua prey on the eggs and chicks.

Adelie Penguin Sound Call


Adelie Penguin Documentary


Adélie Penguin Lifespan


In captivity (such as in Zoo), Adélie penguins can live up to 30 years. In the wild, they can live up to 15 to 20 years. Usually, the crucial time for their better survival in the wild is the first few years of their life.

Adelie Penguin Fun Facts:


  • This penguin got its name from Adele Dumont D’Urville, the wife of French explorer Jules Dumont D’Urville who discovered the Adelie Island in 1840 on the continent of Antartica.
  • The white belly of Adelie penguins is used as a camouflage because it is hard for predators to see them from below in the water.
  • Interestingly, Adelie penguins involve in prostitution for getting the pebbles from male penguins. BBC News online reported this story back in 1998. Follow the full excerpts here.
  • Due to climate change and global warming, Adelie penguin population may decline by the end of this century (2099).

Cite This Page

APA7MLA8Chicago (2023, October 01). Adélie Penguin (Pygoscelis Adeliae). Bio Explorer. "Adélie Penguin (Pygoscelis Adeliae)" Bio Explorer, 01 October 2023, "Adélie Penguin (Pygoscelis Adeliae)" Bio Explorer, October 01 2023.
Key References
  • “Adélie Penguin – Introduction | Neotropical Birds Online”. Accessed December 01, 2017. Link.
  • “Penguinscience – understanding penguin response to climate and ecosystem change”. Accessed December 03, 2017. Link.
  • “Climate change may shrink Adélie penguin range by end of century”. Accessed December 03, 2017. Link.
  • “SeaWorld Parks and Entertainment”. Accessed December 03, 2017. Link.


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