How long do penguins live?
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How long do penguins live?

In the wild there haven't been any reliable long term studies of individual penguins that can tell how long they live. The only such study was carried out in the 1940's and 50's by Lance Richdale in New Zealand. He monitored a population of Yellow-eyed penguins over a 15 year period. Certainly there were some chicks that he saw hatch that survived through most of the study; so it is reasonable to put the lifespan of Yellow-eyed penguins at 15 years or more. The only other information comes from studies on captive birds. Zoos and aquaria often know how old their birds are when they die. However, the common causes of death in captivity (Avian Malaria and Aspergillosis) are not particularly prevalent in the wild so the experiences with captive birds are probably under-estimates. On the other hand the captive birds will not suffer starvation if fish stocks go down suddenly and they have no predators (such as leopard seals and killer whales) to kill them. Anyway, zoos reckon birds live 10 to 20 years depending on species, with the larger species generally being longer lived.