Return Point / Cheal Point, Coronation Island

Country/territory: Antarctica

IBA Criteria met: A4ii, A4iii (2015)
For more information about IBA criteria please click here

Area: 170 ha

Protection status:

Site description

Return Point and Cheal Point are located on the southwestern coast of Coronation Island, between Moreton Point and the Gosling Islands. The IBA qualifies on the basis of the Chinstrap Penguin (Pygoscelis antarctica) colony present and the high concentration of seabirds (in particular Chinstrap Penguin and Southern Fulmar (Fulmarus glacialoides)). The IBA comprises three large ice-free areas at Return Point, Cheal Point and to the east of Cheal Point.

The nearest research station is Signy (GBR), located 24 km southeast of the IBA. See IBA Signy Island for information on the environment and facilities at this station.

Key biodiversity

Approximately 38 100 pairs of Chinstrap Penguin were recorded breeding on ice-free areas on and around Return Point and Cheal Point in 1984 (Poncet & Poncet 1985).

Southern Fulmars are also confirmed breeders at the site, with many thousands recorded at Cheal Point and Return Point in 1984 (unpublished data S. Poncet pers. comm. 2005).

Non-bird biodiversity: None known.

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2020) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Return Point / Cheal Point, Coronation Island. Downloaded from on 21/10/2020.