Penguins

A:

The origin of the beloved penguin waddle begins with the extinction of the dinosaurs, which killed most oceanic predators like sharks and reptiles. This allowed certain birds to dive into the water for food, and over generations their wings turned to strong flippers, their legs shrunk, and they became flightless. Eventually, their bird-like horizontal posture gave way to a vertical “standing” waddle that we recognize today.

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  • What do penguins eat?

    Q: What do penguins eat?

    A: Penguins generally eat fish, squid and krill, though their diet depends on the species. Generally, penguins living close to the equator eat more fish, while penguins in arctic climates rely on squid and krill for sustenance.
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  • How fast can penguins swim?

    Q: How fast can penguins swim?

    A: According to Falklands Conservation, penguins can swim at speeds of up to 17 mph; however, they normally average between 9 and 15 mph. Penguins can also dive further and swim faster than any other bird.
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  • What is a penguin's habitat?

    Q: What is a penguin's habitat?

    A: Penguin habitats are always close to ocean waters, though some live in warmer climates and some in colder ones. Penguins need to live close to water since they spend three quarters of their time there. They also hunt for squid, krill, fish and crustaceans, which are all in the water.
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  • Do penguins live at the North Pole?

    Q: Do penguins live at the North Pole?

    A: Penguins do not live at the North Pole and never have. They populate only the waters and coastal areas of the Southern Hemisphere, particularly Antarctica.
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  • Who is the most decorated military penguin?

    Q: Who is the most decorated military penguin?

    A: Sir Nils Olav, a king penguin, was knighted in 2008 and is the official mascot and honorary Colonel-in-Chief of the Norwegian Royal Guard. He lives in Scotland’s Edinburgh Zoo, and members of the Guard usually visit the penguin when they have military duties in Scotland.
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  • Do penguins live in Alaska?

    Q: Do penguins live in Alaska?

    A: There are no penguins in Alaska other than in zoos. Penguins are natives of the Southern Hemisphere. The northernmost population is on the Galapagos Islands, which lie on the equator.
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  • What are the predators of penguins?

    Q: What are the predators of penguins?

    A: Land predators of the various penguin species include lizards, skuas, snakes, other birds and ferrets. Water predators consist largely of killer whales, leopard seals and sharks. While penguins are now protected, humans have been known to hunt them illegally for their oil and eggs.
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  • How do penguins survive in Antarctica?

    Q: How do penguins survive in Antarctica?

    A: According to Cool Antarctica, penguins survive in Antarctica thanks to their thick layer of subcutaneous fat and their small surface-volume ratio. These are essential to maintaining the penguins' core temperature while the animals are submerged in freezing water. Penguins also have feathers, and air trapped between them helps the birds stay warm while on land.
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  • How do penguins care for their young?

    Q: How do penguins care for their young?

    A: Penguins raise their chicks with dedication from egg to adolescence, when they are old enough to enter the water. According to Sea World, scientists believe the different coloration of penguin chicks encourages parenting behavior in adults. Both parents feed their chick, which they recognize by its call, by regurgitating food into its mouth.
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  • How much does a penguin weigh?

    Q: How much does a penguin weigh?

    A: Emperor penguins, the largest species of penguins, weigh between 60 and 90 pounds. The smallest species of penguins, Little Blue penguins, weigh between 2 and 5 pounds. There are 17 different species of penguins in the world.
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  • Where do penguins live?

    Q: Where do penguins live?

    A: All known species of penguins live naturally in the southern hemisphere of the world. They actually occupy habitats which are located on each of the five continents within the southern hemisphere.
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  • What do king penguins eat?

    Q: What do king penguins eat?

    A: King penguins eat squids and fish. A carnivorous animal, king penguins especially like consuming the lantern fish. However, they also dine on other species of small fish, krill and small crustaceans.
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  • What makes up a penguin's diet?

    Q: What makes up a penguin's diet?

    A: According to About.com, penguins are carnivores with piscivorous diets, and their diet consists mainly of fish, crustaceans and cephalopods. Penguins are opportunistic feeders, and their diet is largely based on what is available seasonally and in a particular location.
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  • How fast do penguins swim?

    Q: How fast do penguins swim?

    A: Emperor penguins have an average swimming speed of 6.7 mph but have been observed swimming as fast as 8.9 mph. King and chinstrap penguin's average speed is 5.3 mph, while the fairy penguin swims much slower at only 1.6 mph.
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  • What is a group of penguins called?

    Q: What is a group of penguins called?

    A: The name for a group of penguins varies based on whether the penguins being described are on land or at sea. "Rookery," "waddle" or "colony" are all three terms that are used in reference to a group of penguins on land, while a group of penguins floating at sea is referred to as a "raft."
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  • How did penguins get their waddle?

    Q: How did penguins get their waddle?

    A: The origin of the beloved penguin waddle begins with the extinction of the dinosaurs, which killed most oceanic predators like sharks and reptiles. This allowed certain birds to dive into the water for food, and over generations their wings turned to strong flippers, their legs shrunk, and they became flightless. Eventually, their bird-like horizontal posture gave way to a vertical “standing” waddle that we recognize today.
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  • Do penguins migrate?

    Q: Do penguins migrate?

    A: Adult penguins migrate from breeding to feeding grounds. Some species of penguins travel long distances between rookeries and coastal feeding waters.
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  • How long can penguins stay underwater?

    Q: How long can penguins stay underwater?

    A: According to information from the Antarctica government, the Emperor penguin is capable of a 22-minute underwater stay, up to a depth of 984 feet. The length of a typical stay is three to six minutes.
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  • How much do penguins weigh?

    Q: How much do penguins weigh?

    A: Penguins weigh from 2 to 90 pounds depending on the species of penguin and the stage of the breeding cycle. Little blue penguins, found only near Australia and New Zealand, are the smallest and weigh 2 or 3 pounds.
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  • Where do penguins sleep?

    Q: Where do penguins sleep?

    A: Penguins sleep on both land and as they float at sea. It is not unusual for penguins to sleep standing up, although they also sleep laying down.
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  • How many eggs do penguins lay?

    Q: How many eggs do penguins lay?

    A: A penguin usually lay two eggs per breeding cycle; however they lay them several days apart. These eggs usually hatch about a day and a half apart from each other.
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