FACTS ON PENGUINS
Facts About Penguins
Many penguins live in coastal Antarctica, but none live at the South Pole: the Pole, at the center of the frozen continent, is too far from the ocean, and penguins need the ocean to catch the fish, squid, and shrimp on which they feed.
In fact, of the 18 species of penguin, not all live in Antarctica. Some instead live in the most southern parts of Africa and South America as well as in other southerly places such as New Zealand. One penguin species, the Galapagos penguin, lives not far from the equator.
Sizes among penguin species range from the emperor penguin (above), which is over three and a half feet (1.1 meters) tall, and can weigh 35 kilos (75 pounds), to the fairy penguin, which only weighs 2.2 pounds (1 kilogram).
All penguins are upright, flightless birds, with wings that have evolved into flippers for swimming. the familiar, tuxedo-like plummage is common across penguin species. Many types of penguins live in large colonies, and they breed and feed as a group.
Penguins typically produce a single egg and chick each year, which is cared for by both parents. Male penguins incubate the egg and care for the chick while the female is off feeding herself in the ocean and preparing to bring back a meal, which she regurgitates for the chick.
By all accounts, penguins are among the most devoted parents in the animal kingdom.