2 Types of Penguins found in Ecuador! (2024)

What are the different kinds of penguins in Ecuador?

Types of penguins in Ecuador

It’s easy to see why people are fascinated with penguins. Besides their adorable looks, these birds are unlike any other in the world!

They’re flightless birds that love to swim, they stand upright instead of hunched over, and almost all of them live in the southern hemisphere.

Keep reading to learn about EVERY type of penguin that lives on the planet, including photos and range maps!

THE 2 PENGUIN species in Ecuador:

#1. Galápagos Penguin

  • Spheniscus mendiculus

Types of penguins in Ecuador

Identifying Characteristics:

  • Adults are 49–50 cm (19–20 in) tall and weigh 2.5–4.5 kg (5.5–9.9 lb).
  • They have a black upper body and head with a white stripe from behind the eyes to under the chin. The belly is white with a black ring outlined in white.
  • Their beaks are black on the top and pink on the bottom.

Galápagos Penguins are the ONLY penguins that live NORTH of the equator!

Galápagos Penguins are found on the Galapágos Islands of Ecuador.

As their name suggests, this species is native to the Galápagos Islands. They hunt in cold ocean waters by day, relying on the current to bring food near their breeding sites. They return to land to roost at night.

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The Galápagos Penguins are currently an endangered species. However, there is hope for this amazing species! They’re currently experiencing a baby boom, and with conservation efforts underway, we may see their population rebound. Read more about the reasons for the baby boom, which include less tourism and increased food supply, here.

  • Estimated Global Population: 2,000 individual penguins

#2. Humboldt Penguin

  • Spheniscus humboldti

Types of penguins in Ecuador

Identifying Characteristics:

  • Adults are 56-70 cm (22-28 in) tall and weigh 2.9-6 kg (6.4-13.2 lb).
  • They have a black head and a white marking that goes from behind the eye and chin to join at the throat.
  • The upper parts are black or dark grey, while the abdomens are white, with a black breast-band.

Humboldt Penguins in Ecuador are incredibly outgoing!

This species is popular in zoos because of its boisterous, excitable nature. They’re often seen crowding around zookeepers, trying to be first in line for a treat!

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In the wild, Humboldt Penguins like to build their nests on rocky coasts, where they burrow holes into crevices. Interestingly, they often live in harmony with Magellanic penguins.

Humboldt Penguins are found along the west coast of South America in Chile, Peru, and Ecuador.

These penguins have excellent eyesight, which is their main hunting tool. They can track fast-moving schools of ocean fish like sardines and anchovies, then dive up to 54 m (177 ft) to catch them.

Unfortunately, Humboldt Penguins face more threats to their existence than many other types of penguins. First, they have to contend with predators and invasive species. Additionally, these birds are particularly sensitive to human disturbance, climate change, competition from fisheries, and industrial development. All these factors combined have caused the Humboldt Penguin’s population status to be listed as Vulnerable on the IUCN Red List.

  • Estimated Global Population: 12,000 breeding pairs

Do you want to know more about penguins in Ecuador?

Which type of penguin in Ecuador is your favorite?

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