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emperor penguin colony

Marching toward extinction?

Emperor penguins (popularized by the 2005 movie “March of the Penguins”) depend on sea ice for their daily lives — it’s where they breed, feed, and molt. These young emperor chicks wait for a meal from their parents beneath the Ross Ice Shelf in Antarctica in December 2007. New research by WHOI biologists Stephanie Jenouvrier and Hal Caswell and colleagues indicates that emperors could be headed toward extinction in at least part of their range before the end of the century if climate change continues to melt sea ice at the rates published in the latest Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. (Photo by Chris Linder, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution)

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