Evidence of philopatry and natal dispersal in Humboldt Penguins

Alejandro Simeone, Roberta S. Wallace

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


We report evidence of both philopatry and natal dispersal in Humboldt Penguins (Spheniscus humboldti) from a colony in central Chile. Between 1994 and 2001, we tagged 241 Humboldt Penguin chicks with subcutaneous transponder chips. Seven birds (3%) were found as adults at their natal colony: five were breeding (philopatric birds) and two were prospecting for nest-sites. Another four birds (2%) were found breeding at other colonies up to 90km from the natal colony. Philopatric birds bred at 3.6- 6.1 years old (mean±s.d.≤4. 8±1 years) at nests located 5-80m from their natal nests (30±25m). Most philopatric and the prospecting birds used the same types of nests as their natal ones and we suggest that birds breeding for the first time may use cues of structural aspects of their natal nest when choosing a nesting site for the first time.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)69-73
Number of pages5
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2014

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Animal Science and Zoology
  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Nature and Landscape Conservation


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