What Are Baby Penguins Called?

Fuse/Getty Images

Baby penguins are referred to as chicks. A group of penguin chicks is known as a crèche, which is the French word for crib.

Adult penguins only recognize their own baby chicks. Parents can tell the chicks apart based on a unique call that every chick has, according to SeaWorld. The chicks are fed regurgitated food until their feathery down is replaced with waterproof feathers.

Many penguins form large colonies during the breeding season and lay their eggs in burrows or build nests. However, the male emperor penguin keeps the egg in his brood pouch, while the female returns to the sea to eat. When she returns, she takes over the job of raising the chick while he goes to feed.

Some species of penguins allow older chicks to gather together in crèches for protection from would-be predators. As of 2014, there are 17 species of penguins in the world, according to the Tennessee Aquarium. All of these species live south of the equator.