World effort to protect penguins in Antarctica

(VOVworld) – Penguins, one of the world’s most special species, are under threat of both climate change and human impact. Scientists are warning of the extinction of penguins in the wild within decades if no action is taken.

World effort to protect penguins in Antarctica - ảnh 1
Penguins in Terra Nova Bay, Antarctica (Photo: EPA)

Penguins are seen as an important measurement of sea state and the need to safeguard natural resources in Antarctica. The population of penguins depends on the management of the ecosystem, including climate change and human activity.

The Pew Charitable Trusts of the US say two thirds of the 18 penguin species in the world, whose habitat spreads from the Galapagos Islands to the Ice Sea in Antarctica, are in decline. Studies by the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution show that the penguin population will decrease by almost 20% by 2100. Antarctic researcher Cassandra Brooks of Stanford University said penguins could almost disappear by 2100. 

Experts say the main cause is global warming, which is melting the glaciers and affecting penguins’ reproduction and growth which mostly takes place on the sea ice. Ice melting also affects species that are the main food source of penguins.

Scientists are now calling to include penguins in the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List of Threatened Species. They also propose to establish a Marine Protected Area in the Ross Sea, East of Antarctica, and to restrict tourism and fishing activities in order to safeguard penguins’ habitat. This is currently considered the best solution to protect penguins worldwide.

The Antarctic is now home to around 600,000 penguins. But the species is in danger of extinction and greater global efforts are needed to protect them.