1. Antarctica is a place that often fascinates scientists. In fact
, scientists are the only people that actually
stay in Antarctica. However, the cold continent
is the home to different
types of animals, including the Emperor Penguin.
2. The Emperor Penguin lives in colonies on the coast
of Antarctica. It is the largest of all penguins, sometimes as tall as 4 feet and weighing as much as 90 pounds. That’s about as big as a third or fourth grader. Penguins, unlike most birds on this planet
, cannot fly, but they do swim extremely
well. Just like all penguins, Emperor Penguins have a short neck, large head, a straight
body, a tiny
tail, and flipper-like wings. They also have webbed feet that help them swim well.
3. The Emperor Penguins have adapted well to the harsh climate
, which can be as low as negative
eighty-four degrees Fahrenheit. In order to survive
in this type of weather
, Emperor Penguins have a thick layer
under their skin, which is covered with a layer
of feathers. The penguins huddle
together in large groups to keep warm. They actually trade
places with each other to move towards the middle. This way, all the penguins have a turn in the central area
, which is the warmest.
4. The Emperor Penguin is one of the only animals in Antarctica to spend the frigid
winters on the cold ice. The summer in the Southern Hemisphere, where Antarctica is located, corresponds to winter in the United States. They actually breed
in the winter rather than in the summertime, like most birds. When the Emperor Penguin meets its mate, the female penguin lays just a single egg and then leaves her mate and the egg. While she is gone, she searches for food in the open water and can travel up to 50 miles during this time. The Emperor Penguins eat different
types of fish and squid.
5. While the female is out looking for food, the male incubates the egg, keeping it warm during the winter by balancing it under its stomach and on top of his feet. The male stands with the egg balanced
for about 65 days, even with freezing temperatures, wind, and snow storms that take place around him. He doesn’t eat this entire
time! Finally, after about two months, the female returns with food for herself and her new baby. The male takes off for his turn finding food, leaving the mom to nurture
her new addition
6. When the eggs hatch
, the newborn Emperor Penguins stay within their mother’s pouch, so they don’t freeze. The baby chicks are called crèches. When they are slightly older, they often group together in order to keep warm.
7. Throughout their lives, these penguins make sure to work together to try to survive
the freezing climate
of Antarctica. They are animals that we should continue
to watch and study
because of the way they adapt
to their environment