Here’s some Adélie Penguins facts:
Adélie Penguins are one of the most common species of penguins that live on Antarctica. There are over 5 million of them! They’re easy to tell apart from the other species because they are the smallest and have all-black heads with white circles around their eyes.
Like all penguins, the Adélie are flightless. But it sure looks like they fly when they are in the water! Because of their torpedo shaped bodies Adélie Penguins are able to swim as fast as 45 miles per hour. Their skill in the water helps them catch fish and squid, which are their main source of food in addition to small shrimplike creatures called krill.
Catching a lot of food keeps the Adélie strong and healthy enough to reproduce. During September and October they gather along the rocky shores of Antarctica to breed and lay their eggs. The female digs a shallow hole to lay her two eggs in. She normally lines the hole with rocks to keep the eggs off of the cold bare ground. The male helps take care of the eggs and the parents take turns watching them in between swimming and hunting.
Once the eggs hatch, which is usually in December, the parents continue to take turns watching and caring for the chicks. After a few weeks all of the chicks in a colony will gather together and live in a large group. The parents go back to their normal routines. The large groups of youngsters provide safety in numbers and an ideal environment for learning to hunt and swim. After two months their baby feathers are mostly gone and they now have their adult waterproof feathers. At this age the Adélie take to the ocean to hunt and swim although they still live in their groups called colonies. When the penguins have grown to between three and five years old, it is their turn to breed and have young. And the whole cycle repeats itself!
Want to learn more about the cool Adélie penguins? More Adelie penguins facts pages:
Swimming with Adélie Penguins
The Adelie Penguins and Global Warming
Adopt a penguin and save them!
Adelie penguin pictures