King Penguin Aptenodytes patagonicus



  • Year-round
  • Migration
  • Breeding
  • Non-Breeding
Distribution of the King Penguin
eBird range map for King Penguin

Generated from eBird observations (Year-Round, 1900-present)

Distribution in the Americas

Not found in the america's only sub-anartic islands surronding the anartic.

Distribution outside the Americas

King penguins are found in sub-antarctic islands free from frozen ice. Island such as King Penguins are found on the Antarctic ice barrier, Tierra del Fuego and on eight islands in the Southern hemisphere.


King penguins do not migrate and spend a lot of time in the ocean feeding, but their primary habitats are sparsely vegetated areas of islands in the southern oceans and sub-Antarctic. The islands south of the Polar Front are typically more glaciated with higher altitudes. These islands are still out of reach of the Antarctic pack ice, but icy conditions are still prevalent. In the locations not covered in ice, bryophytes are the primary vegetation. Islands have some flowering plants and ferns and the air temperature only varies a few degrees between the summer and winter seasons.

King penguins prefer to live on islands south of the Polar Front, they prefer to fish in waters just north of it where surface air temperatures are around 4.5 degrees C. They have been known to dive to a maximum of 322 meters. (McGonigal and Woodworth, 2001)

Historical changes

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Recommended Citation

King Penguin (Aptenodytes patagonicus), In Neotropical Birds Online (T. S. Schulenberg, Editor). Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Ithaca, NY, USA. retrieved from Neotropical Birds Online: