Where do penguins live?
What’s special about penguins?
Everyone knows that they look different from other birds.
They don’t fly but instead waddle around on their bellies and flippers.
But do you know where these strange birds come from?
Penguins live in the southern hemisphere, which means they mostly live near Antarctica!
There are many species of penguins, but they all look a bit like shaggy, fat chickens.
They breed and nest on the ground, but only in the coldest months of the year—December to March—because during the rest of the year they’re at sea!
Penguins often travel long distances to find food.
Most live in colonies close to where their parents lived when they were young.
There they wait for the adults to bring back small fish like anchovies, sardines, or krill (small shrimps).
Some penguins come together in groups over 400,000 strong!
Did you find out where Penguins live?
Penguins primarily inhabit polar regions of the Southern Hemisphere.
There are 18 known species of Penguin, all native to the southern hemisphere.
The Galápagos Penguin is the only species of penguin that can be found north of the equator.
The coldest regions in which they live are located at the “bottom” of their respective hemispheres; i.e., just south of 60 degrees latitude in both cases.
The primary habitat of penguins is in the Southern Ocean, which covers much of the Antarctic.
Some species live in other oceans even! The Galápagos Penguin can be found to the north at the equator.
Some species can also be found just beyond Earth’s tropics, where they are referred to as tropical penguins, but they reside in the Southern Hemisphere.
Their physical adaptations for their aquatic environment are unique among birds and include their use of underwater or under-ice burrows on land, their wings have become flippers with tiny webbed feathers; some species have a brood patch on the chest where warming occurs; others can absorb oxygen through capillaries in their feathers.
The diet of penguins consists primarily of fish but also includes crustaceans, such as krill, and cephalopods, such as squid.
Some penguin species are predators or scavengers; adults of both sexes will guard their nests and young against certain predators, even when the chicks are still very young.
Penguin communities are often studied in the ecological field of zoology, but also contribute to marine mammal conservation management.
Penguins have long had a fascination with humankind; explorers have written about their encounters with these remarkable birds, while millions more around the world delight in watching them on their home videos.
Penguins live mainly in cold regions because they lose body heat more slowly than other birds.
They breed only in the coldest months of the year—December and January.
That’s because during the rest of the year they’re at sea, hunting for food and gaining weight before their next breeding season arrives.
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