Madder Cliffs, Joinville Island

Country/territory: Antarctica

IBA Criteria met: A4iii (2015)
For more information about IBA criteria please click here

Area: 55 ha

Protection status:

Site description

Madder Cliffs lie at the northern entrance to Kinnes Cove at the western extremity of Joinville Island, Erebus and Terror Gulf. A rocky beach lies below scree and tuff ridges and cliffs, with the distinctive red rocks that give the site its name. The IBA qualifies on the basis of the concentration of seabirds present (in particular Adélie Penguin (Pygoscelis adeliae)) and comprises the ice-free area at Madder Cliffs.

Snow algae and Prasiola crispa have been reported at the site (Naveen 2003).

The nearest permanent scientific research stations are Petrel (ARG), Esperanza (ARG) and Teniente de Navio Ruperto Elichiribehety (URY), more information on which can be found under IBA D'Urville Monument, Joinville Island and IBA Hope Bay.

Key biodiversity

A rough estimate made in 2003 indicated around 20 000 – 25 000 pairs of Adélie Penguin breed at Madder Cliffs, located along exposed ridges and knolls above the beach (Naveen & Lynch 2011). Gentoo Penguins (Pygoscelis papua) also breed at the site and around 450 chicks were counted in 2005 (Lynch et al. 2008). Kelp Gull (Larus dominicanus) and Snowy Sheathbill (Chionis albus) are also confirmed breeders at the site (Naveen & Lynch 2011).

Non-bird biodiversity: None known.

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2019) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Madder Cliffs, Joinville Island. Downloaded from on 20/05/2019.