All but one species of penguins live in which area of the world?
And the answer: Southern hemisphere.
Penguins live almost exclusively in the Southern hemisphere, with only the Galapagos penguin found north of the equator. Major populations of penguins are found in southern parts of South America, Africa, and Australia, as well as in Antarctica.
Penguins are among the most unique bird species. As fascinating as they are adorable, here are 4 fun facts about these cold-weather birds.
- The smallest species of penguin is called the Little Blue Penguin. Also aptly referred to as fairy penguins, these little guys clock in at just over a foot tall and a measly three pounds (dwarfing in comparison to 4-foot Emperor penguins).
- Scientists estimate that there are around 20 species of penguin, but that number is still up for debate. Some species, like the Rockhopper, offer unique qualities but are commonly classified with two others within the same species due to their similarities.
- Although penguins waddle slowly on land, they are streamlined for water travel. Oftentimes, penguins will jump into the water before diving down to release air bubbles. Once in the water, penguins can go anywhere from 7 to 22 miles per hour (the fastest penguin, the Gentoo, proudly boasts the second speed). These little-legged jumpers can also leap up to 9 feet out of the water to come back ashore.
- Penguins can dive up to 800 feet deep. Emperor penguins can dive for almost 30 minutes on a single breath, and have been recorded to dive as deep as 1,500 meters. That's quite an impressive feat!
Watch these masters of the (frigid) sea at work below.