National Penguin Day
Today we celebrate and bring awareness to our little buddies who are always ready for the next black-tie event, the penguins.
The Wildlife Conservation Network states that there are actually 18 different penguin species concentrated in the Southern Hemisphere, 60% of which are listed as threatened. Most penguin populations are at risk from changes in our oceans primarily due to pollution, fisheries mismanagement, and the effects of climate change.
Penguins are also a very important part of our ecosystem.
“Penguins—adults, young and eggs—serve as food for predators such as leopard seals and seabirds in cold areas, along with foxes, leopards, and even crabs in warmer climates. By chasing after fish, squid and krill, they affect prey populations wherever they hunt. They carry nutrients between land and sea, and enrich both with their feces. Some burrowing species even modify the landscape as they dig nests into the ground.”
These little guys can use our help and we can start by learning more about them and what we can do to prevent destruction of their habitats.
Did you know?
The earliest known penguin lived over 65 million years ago
Emperor Penguins can be as large as 3.7 feet tall – making them the largest of all penguins
Penguins can dive as fast as 7.5 miles per hour
Most penguins are monogamous
The average wild penguin can live up to 20 years
Today's also the perfect day to go visit these cute little guys at the zoo or aquatic center, but if you can't get out, feel free to spy on our very own African Penguins at the San Diego Zoo.