Happy Penguin Appreciation Day
In tribute to these flightless birds of the Antarctic, watch your fill of these cute and cuddly birds and take an extra helping of Believe It or Not: Penguin Edition!
Penguins have their version of a diamond engagement ring. Many penguins mate for life, but before they settle down to roost, the female has to accept the male’s proposal. To make themselves more desirable, male penguins bring females a gift: the smoothest pebble they can find. Accepting his gift is equivalent to sliding that ring on your finger.
Though most male penguins will search for a stone to impress a mate, many penguins will skip the search and just steal a pebble from a neighboring nest.
Penguins are Old
Scientists have discovered 36-million-year-old fossil evidence of penguins in Peru that once stood 6-foot 8-inches. That’s as tall as Lebron James!
Not only were these penguins twice the height and weight of the tallest penguins alive today, emperor penguins, but also had bills that stretched out two feet, which they used to scoop up fish in the warm Peruvian waters.
The only penguins alive today that inhabit warm waters are the Galapagos penguins.
One in a Zillion Penguin
Though albino penguins like Snowdrop are rare, an all black penguin was found in 2010 and was said to only be a “one in a zillion” chance by zoologists at the University of Toronto.
6 Random Penguin Things
1. While researchers were filming killer whales, one penguin decided to jump onto their boat to escape the whales’ gnashing teeth.
2. An Emperor penguin was once found washed ashore in New Zealand—nearly 2000 miles from its Antarctic habitat.
3. The chemical compound Penguinone is named after penguins. Researchers thought the compound resembled the flightless bird. Call me crazy, but I can see the resemblance!
4. Australia’s oldest man, Alfred “Alfie” Date, age 109, regularly spends his time knitting sweaters for injured penguins.
5. To get the maximum amount of fresh water out of an ingested fish, penguins have a gland to remove salt from the water in their body.
6. Penguins at the Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies are artists. You can take home a one-of-a-kind penguin art piece that you helped create!