Positioned in the Strait of Magellan about 27 miles northeast of Punta Arenas, Magdalena Island is a nature preserve that protects the Magellanic Penguins.
The island is literally covered by penguins, and in fact, an estimated 70,000 mated pairs call it home. When their chicks are counted the number exceeds 200,000.
What do 200,000 penguins look like standing in one place? Check this out!The island has other species of wildlife including cormorants, common seagulls, dolphin gulls and Chilean skuas. Scattered bunches of Eared Seals and South American Fur Seals are found along the shoreline.
A very curious adult Magellanic Penguin.
This is a four month old chick in molt. Once it gains another few pounds, it will leave the island in April, not to return until September of the year. This one was so cute I just wanted to hold him.
Magellanic Penguins move somewhat swiftly, even on rocky, uneven terrain.
"We just love it when you sing our favorite song."
A crowded day at the beach on Magdalena Island.
This is a young red-eyed Rockhopper Penguin standing right in the middle of the Magellanic Penguin colony. How he (or she) got to Magdalena Island is a mystery of sorts as generally (according to park rangers) penguin species don't mix very well when there's chicks about.
A close up of an adult Magellanic Penguin.
Penguins maintain their burrows constantly, and this little guy was bringing a mouthful of sea kelp to his.
Were these two snuggling or fighting? I couldn't tell.
Just out of the burrow, this one seemed to be posing for the picture.
This trio was on their way to the sea.
A closer look at a molting chick.
In a few more weeks the molting period will be over for this chick.