A new study suggests that emperor penguins are adapting to climate change surprisingly well
by Lindsey Little
Categories: Causes, Environment, Science.

Receding sea ice in recent decades has had researchers concerned that the long-studied emperor penguin colony shown in “March of the Penguins” would lose its breeding ground.

Recent findings, however, have given scientists hope that the penguins can in fact move to different breeding grounds as the environment around them changes.

A new study, published in the journal Ecography suggests emperor penguins may adapt better to the effects of climate change than researchers previously believed.

Emperor penguins were thought to return to their nesting ground to breed, but satellite images from the University of Minnesota proved this theory wrong. Over a three year period, the research team watched a group of penguins change breeding grounds six times.

“Our research showing that colonies seem to appear and disappear throughout the years challenges behaviors we thought we understood about emperor penguins,” said lead author Michelle LaRue at the IDEACITY conference. “If we assume that these birds come back to the same locations every year, without fail, these new colonies we see on satellite images wouldn’t make any sense. These birds didn’t just appear out of thin air-they had to have come from somewhere else. This suggests that emperor penguins move among colonies. That means we need to revisit how we interpret population changes and the causes of those changes.”

“If we want to accurately conserve the species, we really need to know the basics,” said LaRue. “We’ve just learned something unexpected, and we should rethink how we interpret colony fluctuations.”

After the recent UN report on climate change calling for urgent action, it’s nice to see a positive story occurring in nature.

Photo Credit: Shutterstock

About Lindsey Little

Lindsey Little is a holistic health coach currently residing in Baltimore, MD. She specializes in vegan and gluten-free living. When she's not in the kitchen creating delicious new recipes, Lindsey can be found doing yoga or curled up with a good book. Visit her at www.havelessbemore.com to learn more.

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  • mysticwine

    Even these guys know the hoax. STOP GLOBAL WHINING!

  • bgrnathan

    NOT MADE BY NATURE! Just because something exists in nature doesn’t mean it was invented or made by Nature. If all the chemicals necessary to make a cell were left to themselves, “Mother Nature” would have no ability to organize them into a cell. It requires an already existing cell to bring about another cell. The cell exists and reproduces in nature but Nature didn’t invent or design it! Nature didn’t originate the cell or any form of life. An intelligent power outside of nature had to be responsible.

    Natural laws can explain how an airplane or living cell works, but it’s irrational to believe that mere undirected natural laws can bring about the origin of an airplane or a cell. Once you have a complete and living cell then the genetic program and biological machinery exist to direct the formation of more cells, but how could the cell have originated naturally when no directing code and mechanisms existed in nature? All of the founders of modern science believed in God. Read my Internet article: HOW FORENSIC SCIENCE REFUTES ATHEISM

    Only evolution within “kinds” is genetically possible (i.e. varieties of dogs, cats, etc.), but not evolution across “kinds” (i.e. from sea sponge to human). How did species survive if their vital tissues, organs, reproductive systems were still evolving? Survival of the fittest would actually have prevented evolution across kinds! Read my Internet article: WAR AMONG EVOLUTIONISTS! (2nd Edition).

    Natural selection doesn’t produce biological traits or variations. It can only “select” from biological variations that are possible and which have survival value. The real issue is what biological variations are possible, not natural selection. Only limited evolution, variations of already existing genes and traits are possible. Nature is mindless and has no ability to design and program entirely new genes for entirely new traits.

    Modern evolutionists believe and hope that over, supposedly, millions of years, random genetic mutations in the genes of reproductive cells caused by environmental radiation will generate entirely new genes. This is total blind and irrational faith on the part of evolutionists. It’s much like believing that randomly changing the sequence of letters in a romance novel, over millions of years, will turn it into a book on astronomy! That’s the kind of blind faith macro-evolutionists have.

    Mutations are accidents in the genetic, are mostly harmful, and have no capability of producing greater complexity in the code. Even if a good accident occurred, for every good one there would be hundreds of harmful ones with the net result, over time, being harmful, even lethal, to the species. At best, mutations only produce further variations within a natural species. Even so, mutations are not the best explanation for variations within a natural species.

    Since it isn’t rational to believe that genetic information, like any other form of information, can arise by chance, then it is totally rational to believe that God (the Supreme Genetic Engineer), from the beginning, placed within all natural species the recessive and dominant genes to produce the varieties we find within natural species.

    If life on earth had really existed for millions of years, all species would have become extinct by now due to the colossal number of accumulated mutations over time (please read the author’s popular Internet article, ARE FOSSILS REALLY MILLIONS OF YEARS OLD?).

    What about genetic and biological similarities between species? Genetic information, like other forms of information, cannot happen by chance, so it is more logical to believe that genetic and biological similarities between all forms of life are due to a common Designer who designed similar functions for similar purposes. It doesn’t mean all forms of life are biologically related!

    What about “Junk DNA?” It’s not junk. It’s we who were ignorant of their usefulness. These so-called “non-coding” segments of DNA have recently been shown to be vital in regulating gene expression (i.e. when, where, and how genes are expressed, so they’re not “junk”). Even more recent scientific evidence shows that they do code for proteins, after all, and that we need to readjust our thinking of how the cell reads the genetic code (Read “Human Proteome More Complex Than Previously Thought,” Internet article by Dr. Jeffrey Tomkins). Read my popular Internet article: HOW FORENSIC SCIENCE REFUTES ATHEISM

    Read my popular Internet article, HOW DID MY DNA MAKE ME?

    Visit my newest Internet site: THE SCIENCE SUPPORTING CREATION

    Sincerely,
    Babu G. Ranganathan*
    (B.A. theology/biology)

    Author of popular Internet article, TRADITIONAL DOCTRINE OF HELL EVOLVED FROM GREEK ROOTS

    * I have had the privilege of being recognized in the 24th edition of Marquis “Who’s Who In The East” for my writings on religion and science, and I have given successful lectures (with question and answer time afterwards) defending creation from science before evolutionist science faculty and students at various colleges and universities

    • Luke Perry Glover

      I didn’t read it all, but good job!