April 25th World Penguin Day

World Penguin Day was created, along with Jan. 20th Penguin Awareness Day, to help preserve one of our more adorable assets… the Penguin. The flightless birds gather in Antarctica, South Africa, Australia, New Zealand, Chile, Peru, the Falkland Islands and the Galapagos Islands. Always properly dressed for dinner, or any special occasion, come in 17 or 20 varieties with the most popular being the Emperor that can live up to 20 years.

How to celebrate – Visit the Galapagos Islands. Reads about the struggles of the Penguin. Watch Batman.

April 25th World Penguin Day

Today we celebrate the bird with class, the tuxedo wearing penguin! This is the time of year that the penguin begins to migrate north. Since penguins don’t fly they have to walk or swim to get where they are going, which takes a little longer. The penguin generally enjoy the colder weather, they have heavy layers that keep them warm. There are about a half-dozen different types of penguins, each generally staying to it’s own tribe. They are members of the Spheniscidae family. They, like many wild animals, are threatened by man’s invasion of their territories. Zoos may be the future for penguins which is sad for one of natures most cherished animals.

How to celebrate – Learn the different types of penguins. Visit penguins in the wild, but do not disturb them. Wear a tuxedo to visit them at the zoo.

January 20th National Penguin Awareness Day

Jan.20th National Penguin Awareness Day

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There are some 20 species of penguins in the world but unless you spend a lot of time in a zoo you probably won’t see them. The cannot fly and generally live in the colder regions of the earth.

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It is believed that their black and white coloring is a sort of camouflage from predators under the water. The fastest are the Gentoo, able to reach 22 miles per hour under the water.

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How to celebrate – Go visit penguins in the zoo. Become aware of the 20 different species. Go see Happy Feet.

January 20th Penguin Awareness Day

January 20th Penguin Awareness Day

One of the most favorite creatures in any zoo is the penguin.

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There are somewhere between 18 and 20 different species, most living in the southern hemisphere. They are an aquatic, flightless bird covered in a layer of blubber that keeps them warm in even the coldest climates.

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The smallest penguin is the little blue, living half of its life in the water and the other half on land, the largest is the Emperor Penguin.

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They eat all sorts of sea life and can remain underwater for long periods of time as they search for food.

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How to celebrate – Go visit a penguin in your local zoo. Watch Batman for one of his arch-enemies. Travel to the  Galapagos Islands. Or Australia and visit with a penguin.

April 20th Penguin Awareness Day

The Sphenisciformes of the Spheniscidae family, more commonly known as a penguin, is a flightless bird that lives almost exclusively in the southern hemisphere.  Only the Galapagos penguin is seen further north but still below the equator.  They use their wings to help propel them in the water, not to fly.  They live in colonies and are camouflaged by the white bellies, reflecting the surface of the water, and dark backs, making them hard to see from above.  Their only real enemies are the shark, the Orca and the leopard seal.  They show no fear of man, in fact in most cases they are more curious than anything else.  his can be good, and bad, since man seems to find a way to be the enemy of every wild creature on earth.

Though they may have been around since the dinosaurs walked the earth, man did not run into them until sometime in the 16th century.  There is a great deal of confusion about how they got their name, though it seems it comes from the Dutch, using the Latin term, “pinguis” which means “fat”.  The Dutch seem to have enhanced this term to “fat goose” and applied it to the penguin.

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There are nearly 20 different species of penguins, the smallest living around the coastal waters of Australia and New Zealand, the “little blue penguin”.  The fastest is the Gentoo, capable of reaching speeds of 22 miles per hour in the water. (Around the equator).  The largest is the Emperor Penguin, tough there were penguins called the Giant penguin that grew to over 5 foot tall.  They are now extinct.  Other penguins include; the King, Adelie,Chinstrap, White Flippered, Magellanic, Humbolt, African, Yellow Eyed, Waitaka, Fiordland, Snares, Erect-Crested, Western Rockhopper, Eastern Rockhopper, Macaroni and Chatham.

The penguin is able to drink salt water.  They are able separate out the salt and dispose of it keeping the fresh water for themselves.  They stay warm not only because of their heavy feathers covering their bodies but also because they can recycle their blood, using warm blood to heat the blood that has grown cold.  The process is called the “Heterothermic loophole”.

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Penguins need to be respected by humans, and where possible left alone.  They will do well without our interference but can be a source of joy to watch and learn from.  They are loving and care for their own.  We humans have started to recognize the penguin by putting them in movies such as “Happy Feet”, “Surf’s Up” the “Penguins of Madagascar” and the “March of the Penguins”.   Perhaps with them, we still have a chance to be friends with another of God’s creatures here on earth.

To celebrate: Go see one of the above movies (Most are out on DVD now), plan a trip to the Antarctic or even visit Sea World.