Emperor Penguins

News: a new study published in the journal Biological Conservation has recommended that the status of the emperor penguin, in the Red List of International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), should be changed to ‘vulnerable’.


  • The Emperor Penguin is the largest of all living penguin species. It is the only one that breeds during the Antarctic winter.
  • It is also the only known bird to never breed on dry land, preferring to raise chicks on frozen sea instead.
  • It is listed as Near Threatened in the IUCN Red List.
  • The species is threatened by the effects of projected climate change, primarily through ongoing and future decreases in sea ice concentration and thickness.

Additional Information:

About IUCN Red List

  • The IUCN Red List (also known as Red List of Threatened Species, Red Data Book) was founded in 1964. It uses a set of criteria to scientifically assess the extinction risk of species and sub species of animals and plants.
  • Aim: The Red List aims to draw attention to the threatened state of the biodiversity and provide information to help formulate actions for biodiversity conservation.
  • Categories: IUCN Red List classifies species into 9 categories. Among the categories, Critically Endangered, Endangered and Vulnerable species are considered to be threatened with extinction.
    • Extinct: The last individual has died.
    • Extinct in the Wild: known only to survive in cultivation, in captivity or as a naturalized population outside its historic range.
    • Critically Endangered: Faces an extremely high risk of extinction in the wild
    • Endangered: Faces a very high risk of extinction in the wild
    • Vulnerable: Faces a high risk of extinction in the wild
    • Near Threatened: Likely to be in the threatened category in near future
    • Least Concern: They are widespread and abundant
    • Data Deficient: inadequate information for assessing the risk of extinction
    • Not Evaluated