Penguins are a staple feature of the Argentinean coastline and many species thrive here. One such species is the Magellanic penguin, which is easily distinguished by two black bands between its head and breast. The Punta Tombo Reserve on the east coast is home to the largest Magellanic penguin colony in the world. Each year between September and April, over 100,000 Magellanic penguins venture onto the shore to build their nests.
They mate for life and can identify their partner by their call, which is as unique as a human fingerprint. Although clumsy on land, they are excellent swimmers and their rigid wings are adapted for hunting underwater. They are able to excrete excess salt through a special gland and can dive to depths of 50 metres (164 feet). While millions of these birds live on the South American coast, they are classified as Near Threatened by the IUCN.