Emperor Penguins

they live in Antarctica!!!

Physical Features

Adult Emperor Penguins are black and white in colour with a slight bit of orange on their neck and beak and chicks are light grey with a small black head and white face. These birds are flightless and usually waddle around on their feet or slide on their stomach. The Adults have much darker feathers than the chicks.

Reproduction

Each year these penguins go on a very long journey to a special breeding area where they find a mate and the female lays her egg. The reason they move is because the ice is much thicker in their special breeding grounds so it has less of a chance of melting. After a few weeks most penguins have found a mate and then the female lays a single egg in June. The mother then carefully transfers the egg to the father, some young couples are a little bit careless and they drop their eggs. Once the egg is dropped the couple can't do anything but stand and watch the ice and snow ruin it. The mother then goes on the long journey back to the feeding grounds (where they started off), leaving the father in charge of the egg. While the mother is off feeding, the father has to take care of the egg meanwhile fighting the cold harsh Winter and he can do this for up to 120 days, facing temperatures of up to 80oC. The male huddle up in a big circle to keep warm and wait till the winter is over and the female returns. Once the female returns the egg has usually hatched and the mother takes the chick and gives it it's first proper meal.

Diet/Feeding

Emperor Penguins eat small fish, krill and squid. The chick's parents regurgitate (which almost means throw up) the food for it. While the mother is off getting food the egg hatches and the father has to regurgitate a small amount of milky substance to keep the chick alive. He can't give the baby proper food because he has not had food in such a long time.

Habitat and threats

Emperor Penguins can be found in the South Pole. Which as you could probably tell is located in the Southern Hemisphere and is nowhere near the North Pole, actually the North and South Poles are on opposite sides of the world! They have many threats in their habitat and no, Polar Bears are not one of them, although they might be if they didn't live in the North pole and nowhere else! Their main predators are mainly Leopard seals, orcas/killer whales and predators to chicks only are Large birds like Giant Petrels and Skuas as chicks are much smaller and vulnerable than adults making them easier pickings for these birds.

Interesting facts

Other things you might want to know about Emperor Penguins are that they can dive up to 1700ft or 518.16m deep, they can hold their breath for 15 minutes on this dive to get food. Another interesting fact is that the baby can only take their first steps once they have gone 1000 paces on sitting their mum's feet.

While the males are looking after the egg it becomes Winter and then they have to survive the harsh winds and freezing temperatures for 2 months and to top it off they have to do it without any food at all!