According to the research paper presented on December 10 by a group of scientists at AGU's Meeting, the Adelie penguin colony discovered earlier on the Danger Islands has existed there for almost 3,000 years.
"We discovered that Adélie penguins first occupied the Danger Islands and Paulet Island approximately 2820 and 2936 years before present. To our knowledge, these dates represent the oldest record of Adélie penguin ornithogenic soils in the northern Antarctic Peninsula," the research paper abstract reads.
Michael Polito, the head of the research group, noted that the study of penguin poop could give a retrospective view on how the penguins and territories they occupied have changed in the past.
Adélie penguins (Pygoscelis adeliae), whose only habitat is the Antarctic continet's coast, were named after Adèle Dumont d'Urville, a wife of the explorer Jules Dumont d'Urville, who discovered the first colony of these penguins in 1840. The population of Adélie penguins has been steadily declining over the past 40 years.
In March 2018 the previously unknown supercolony of penguins was found after a group of scientists examined satellite images made during a pan-Arctic survey of Adélie penguins, according to Live Science.
Satellite images of penguin poop-stains in Antarctica have uncovered a massive, previously unknown population of Adélie penguins (1.5 million of them) living on the Danger Islands, which are located at the tip of the Antarctic Peninsula and are surrounded by treacherous seas. pic.twitter.com/AeVaO5OYqB— Reddit SpacePictures (@space_reddit) December 14, 2018