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Brush-tailed penguins
Temporal range: Eocene to present
Manchot 01.jpg
Pygoscelis antarctica
Scientific classification e
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Aves
Order: Sphenisciformes
Family: Spheniscidae
Genus: Pygoscelis
Wagler, 1832

Pygoscelis adeliae
Pygoscelis antarctica
Pygoscelis papua
Pygoscelis tyreei (fossil)
Pygoscelis calderensis (fossil)
Pygoscelis grandis (fossil)

The genus Pygoscelis ("rump-legged") contains three living species of penguins collectively known as "brush-tailed penguins".[1]


Mitochondrial and nuclear DNA evidence suggests the genus split from other penguins around 38 million years ago, about 2 million years after the ancestors of the genus Aptenodytes. In turn, the Adelie penguins split off from the other members of the genus around 19 million years ago.[2]

Extant species
Fossil species

The latter two are tentatively assigned to this genus.

Species photographs[edit]

Photographs of adult penguins of the extant (living) species:


  1. ^ "Pygoscelis". 2000. Retrieved 2016-10-02.
  2. ^ Baker AJ, Pereira SL, Haddrath OP, Edge KA (2006). "Multiple gene evidence for expansion of extant penguins out of Antarctica due to global cooling". Proc Biol Sci. 273 (1582): 11–17. doi:10.1098/rspb.2005.3260. PMC 1560011. PMID 16519228.