What makes the breeding of Emperor Penguins so unusual?


By Amy Duncan

What makes the breeding of Emperor Penguins so unusual?

Of all penguin species, the Emperor Penguin (Aptenodytes forsteri) breeds in the coldest environment.

Emperor Penguins breed in regions with air temperature that descends to minus-40 degrees Fahrenheit (-40 C) and has winds that blow up to 89 mph (144 km/hr).

Additionally, the Emperor Penguin has the longest incubation period of any penguin averaging about 65 days.

Emperor Penguins also have the widest range of vocalizations of any penguin due largely to their breeding habitat of not having any fixed nesting ground, but relying, instead, on being able to recognize the vocal sounds of family members to stay together.

Lastly, the Emperor Penguin is the only penguin to breed during the Antarctic winter. All other penguins species breed in the spring and summer months.


Brennan, Patricia. Penguins and Other Flightless Birds. Chicago, IL: World Book, Inc, 2002.

Daigle, Evelyne. The World of Penguins. New York, NY: Tundra Books, 2007.

Simon, Seymour. Penguins. New York, NY: Collins, 2007.

SLJ Staff. “And Tango Makes Three’ Tops Most Challenged List, Again.” School Library Journal. April 12, 2011. Accessed: January 30, 2013.

Stamps Showing Emperor Penguin Aptenodyte forsteri.” Theme Birds. Accessed: January 30, 2013.

Stefoff, Rebecca. Penguins. Tarrytown, NY: Marshall Cavendish Benchmark, 2005.

Walsh, Michael. “Scientists Solve the Mystery of Penguins’ Incredibly Fast Underwater Swimming Speed: A Secret Layer of Bubbles.” Daily News. October 20, 2012. Accessed: January 19, 2013.






#penguins #birds #canpenguinsfly #CGW #coolgrossweird #besurprised #flocked