Penguins are aquatic flightless birds in the group Neoaves. They dwell in the Southern Hemisphere, spending life at sea except for breeding. They display extreme morphological adaptation, including in their plumage. We study the patterning of their feather follicles that readily organise in tight mesh networks during early skin formation.
AFRICAN AND GENTOO PENGUINS
We study feather patterning in two species of penguins, the African penguin Spheniscus demersus (above), and the Gentoo penguin Pygoscelis adeliae (left). To obtain fertilized eggs for the first species, we collaborate with the Zoo of La Palmyre, in France. For the second species, we visit breeding colonies during breeding season in the Falkland Islands, in collaboration with landowners and the Falkland Islands Government.