Rockhopper Penguins get their name from the rocky shores where they make their nests, and their habit of hopping from rock to rock to get around (instead of sliding like most penguin species). They are members of the genus of crested penguins, which are notable for their spiky yellow feathers on their heads.
There is some confusion among scientists about whether theRockhopper Penguin is a single species, or three closely relatedspecies. The three types, the Southern, Eastern and NorthernRockhopper Penguins, are sometimes treated as subspecies. TheSouthern Rockhopper is considered a vulnerable species, while theNorthern is considered endangered, with a population declineestimated at 90% since the 1950s.