The Falkland Islands are known to have one of the largest populations of Southern rockhopper penguins. I've long looked forward to meeting such unique "people in tuxedos". Although the rockhopper penguin is one of the world’s most numerous penguin populations, it is estimated that the population has decreased almost 90% since the early 20th century. At the census conducted by Falklands Conservation, the total Falkland Islands population was estimated to be 320,000 breeding pairs in 2010 vs. an estimate of 1.5 million breeding pairs in 1933.
When we arrived on New Island, the most westerly inhabited of the Falklands archipelago, we were in such treat to meet a colony that's in nesting season. Many were busy foraging, nesting and/or incubating their first of the two eggs. So, this is the state in which I met them:
Wouldn't you agree that one tends not to be the most elegant when busy? So, I thought I'd do a representation of this species in the "Transformational Beauty" kind of manner:
Do you think that I've done a fine job of transforming this cutie-ful into a beautiful?