Emperor Penguins

Physical Features

The Emperor Penguin is a small breed of penguin with a smooth, black back, black flippers and black clawed feet. Their beaks are black and orange and their necks are yellowish orange. they have a white/cream coloured belly and the front of their legs are also white.

Their legs are quite short so they waddle. The chicks are born with grey feathers and a black helmet shaped ring of feathers around their head. The also have black clawed feet and waddle. The chicks lose there feathers quite quickly.

Diet/Feeding

The Emperor Penguin lives in Antarctica. They hunt for fish in the Antarctic ocean. They can dive to up to 518 metres deep and can hold their breathy for about 15 minutes, so no wonder they chose the water. There they feed for 3 months until they go off to breed.

Reproduction

The penguins march to their mating ground where they were all born and plan to give birth to their own chicks. All penguins mate once a year. First they males and females try to find a mate. There are more females than males so sometimes once everyone has found a mate, lonely females will inturupt the mating. The female gives birth to the egg in early June, she loses 1/3 of her body weight doing so. straight away they start practicing passing over the egg from female to male. The male keeps the egg warm under a flap of skin and balances it on his feet for 2 months whilst the females go on another long walk (around 7 miles) to the ocean to get food. As the female goes to get food the male goes without food for around 128 days and eats the snow to clench his thirst, and all the males huddle up to keep warm, they take turns being in the middle. The females come back in July just after the eggs hatch. They rely on sound to find their mate again because they all look the same. The chicks could die at any point during the incubation and many won't survive the first storm. They stay there until the chick is ready for the march back home. They will all go back next year.

Habitat

Emperor Penguins live in Antarctica. Antarctica used to be a forest buy drifted south and froze, all of the animals died, except the penguins.

Interesting facts

= Usually the oldest penguins die during the march


= Sometimes mothers who lose their chicks try to steal other chicks


=The sea gets closer during breeding season

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