Data Package Summary   View Full Metadata

  • Isotopic signatures of diet provisioned to 5 week old chick Pygoscelis penguins reared along the western Antarctic Peninsula, 2007-2009
  • Palmer Station Antarctica LTER
  • Gorman, Kristen; Simon Fraser University, Vancouver, BC
  • 2017-03-29
  • We evaluated regional variation in reproductive isotopic niche among breeding populations of Adélie (Pygoscelis adeliae), chinstrap (P. antarctica), and gentoo (P. papua) penguins west of the Antarctic Peninsula (AP) to test a hypothesis for sea ice-associated food-web correlates of breeding population change. We rely on signatures of naturally occurring carbon (13C/12C, δ13C) and nitrogen (15N/14N, δ15N) stable isotopes (SI) as integrated proxies of penguin trophic foraging and food-web structure. Each season, study nests, where pairs of adults were present, were individually marked and chosen before the onset of egg-laying, and consistently monitored. When study nests were found at the one-egg stage, both adults were captured to obtain blood samples used for molecular sexing and stable isotope analyses, and measurements of structural size and body mass. At the time of capture, each adult penguin was quickly blood sampled (~1 ml) from the brachial vein. After handling, individuals at study nests were further monitored to ensure the pair reached clutch completion, i.e., two eggs. At approximate an average nest age of five and 15 days, offspring from study nests were captured and quickly blood sampled (≤ ~500 μl for day five chicks, and ≤ ~1 ml for day 15 chicks) from the tarsus vein using a sterile needle and heparinized capillary tubes for day five chicks, and a sterile 3 ml syringe and heparinized infusion needle for day 15 chicks, again to obtain blood tissue for SI analyses. Study nests were monitored for chick survival to 25 days. At five weeks into chick-rearing, older crèched chicks of all three species were captured and quickly blood sampled from study rookeries near Anvers Island. Handling of crèched chicks occurred over a one or two day period, which varied seasonally and by species depending on nest initiation dates. Adélie penguin chicks at Avian Island were sampled on the same day Anvers Island Adélie penguin chicks were sampled. Adélie penguin chicks at Charcot Island, sampled during one season only on 25 January 2010, were handled three days after Anvers Island and Avian Island Adélie penguin chicks were sampled that year, i.e., 22 January 2010. Blood samples from crèched chicks (~1 ml) were taken from the brachial vein using a sterile 3 ml syringe and heparinized infusion needle following sampling procedures used for adult penguins to obtain blood tissue for SI analyses. Stable isotope analyses were conducted at the Stable Isotope Facility at the University of California, Davis using an elemental analyzer interfaced with an isotope ratio mass spectrometer
  • knb-lter-pal.226.1  
  • The data available here are intended for scholarly use by the research community, with the express understanding that data users will properly acknowledge the originating investigator. Use or reproduction of any material herein for any commercial purpose is prohibited without prior written permission from the responsible party.
  • doi:10.6073/pasta/407844a8f884a45b3715d15d27640ce0
EDI is proud to be affiliated with the following organizations: DataCite logo DataONE logo ESIP logo re3data logo