penguin
Penguin’s chicks ©www.mirror.co.uk

Order Sphenisciformes

Family Spheniscidae

Class Aves

Clade Austrodyptornithes

Thumbnail Description

  • Penguins are marine birds that are adapted to living an aquatic life.
  • The body of penguins is so countershaded that it provides perfect camouflage.
  • The small penguins dive in shallow waters.
  • Penguins cannot fly instead they use their wings as flippers to swim.
  • They remain submerged for as long as 1 – 2 minutes.
  • The emperor penguin holds the record of spending the maximum time in water. It remained submerged for 22 minutes reaching depths of about 565 m (1,854 ft).
  • The insulating layer of dense feathers keeps the penguin warm.
  • King penguins and emperor penguins do not build nest. They carry eggs on their feet.
penguin
Adelie Penguin Diving ©kids.nationalgeographic.com

Size & Weight

BODY-LENGTH: 17.7–51.2 in (45–130 cm)

WEIGHT: 1.8–88 lb (842 g–40 kg)

Habitat

Temperate zones, marine coastal areas

Range

Antarctica, South Africa, New Zealand, Argentina, Australia, Falkland Islands, Galapagos Islands, South America

Diet

Small fish, crustaceans, squid

penguin
Emperor penguin holding egg on its feet ©www.antarctica.gov.au

Number of Eggs

1 – 2 eggs

Breeding Season

Unknown

Incubation Period

33 – 64 days

Fledging Period

Unknown

Gestation Period

Unknown

Weaning Period

Unknown

Species

King, Emperor, Adelie, Chinstrap, Gentoo, Little Blue, White-flappered, Magellanic, Humboldt, Galapagos, African, Yellow-eyed, Waitaha, Fiordland, Snares, Erect-crested, Western Rockhopper, Eastern Rockhopper, Northern Rockhopper, Royal, Macaroni, Chatham

Sexual Maturity

2 – 5 years

Population

Unknown

Lifespan

Unknown

Speed

AVERAGE: 6 to 12 km/h (3.7 to 7.5 mph)

TOP: 27 km/h (17 mph)

Baby Name

Unknown

Home Range

Unknown

Group Size

100 – 100,000

Predators

Shark, orca, leopard seal

Behavior

Highly social

Conservation Status

Endangered: 3 species

Vulnerable: 7 species;

Lower Risk: 2 species

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