Family Penguins (Spheniscidae)

Least Concern

Chinstrap Penguin (Pygoscelis antarcticus)


French: Manchot à jugulaire German: Kehlstreifpinguin Spanish: Pingüino barbijo

Aptenodytes antarctica

J. R. Forster

, 1781,

South Shetlands


Closely related to P. adeliae. Monotypic.


Circumpolar in S, with bulk of population in S Atlantic.

Descriptive notes

68–77 cm; 3·2–5·3 kg. Long-tailed penguin with largely white face. Adult has entirely black or bluish-black top of head and upperparts, this colour... read more


Noisy at colony. In display, a loud cackling (with bill open), also a repeated “ah, kauk kauk... read more


Marine, mostly in zones with light pack ice (10–30% ice cover). Nests on irregular rocky... read more

Food and feeding

Almost exclusively Antarctic krill (Euphausia superba), normally in 4·0–5·6-cm size range; also takes other... read more


Arrival at colony Oct–Nov, earliest laying Nov/Dec. Colonial, typically in huge colonies of hundreds of thousands of birds; often... read more


Dispersive, wintering in zones of pack ice from Apr/May to Oct/Nov. Two of six satellite-tracked... read more

Status and conservation

Not globally threatened (Least Concern). Locally abundant. Global population estimated currently to number minimum of 8,000,000 individuals. Although data not always easy to... read more

Recommended citation

Martínez, I., Christie, D.A., Jutglar, F. & Garcia, E.F.J. (2018). Chinstrap Penguin (Pygoscelis antarcticus). In: del Hoyo, J., Elliott, A., Sargatal, J., Christie, D.A. & de Juana, E. (eds.). Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona. (retrieved from on 18 December 2018).