Penguins

It's a well known fact that penguins are not like most other birds. These highly specialized birds are adapted to living at sea — spending as much as 75% of their lives at sea. It's true they cannot fly; instead they swim through the sea at amazing speeds using their "wings" as flippers.

Shiny feathers uniformly overlap to cover a penguin's skin, much like shingles on a roof. Penguin feathers are short, broad, and closely spaced. This helps keep water away from the skin. Penguins have more feathers than most other birds, with about 100 feathers per square inch.

To get an up-close look at the penguins of Antarctica: Empire of the Penguin®, add the Penguins Up-Close Tour to your cart on the right. You'll get to interact with and even touch a penguin!

After you step off your adventure on Antarctica: Empire of the Penguin®, you will find yourself immersed in the penguins' colony in an expanse that envelops you in cool extremes: bringing you above and below their icy world.

Don't forget to check out our Penguins Up-Close Tour to get a behind-the-scenes look at Antarctica: Empire of the Penguin®!

Q: How many different types of penguins are there?
SW: There are 18 different penguin species: emperor, king, gentoo, Adélie, chinstrap, little, yellow-eyed, Snares, macaroni, northern and southern rockhopper, Fiordland, erect-crested, Royal, African, Humboldt, Magellanic, and Galápagos.

Q: Do they only live in Antarctica?
SW: Penguins are actually found on every continent below the equator, including some of the warmest and coldest places on the planet.

Q: Are they endangered?
SW : It depends on the species, but many are facing growing survival risks. The Galápagos, yellow-eyed, northern rockhopper, African and erect-crested penguins are endangered. Threats include habitat and nesting site loss, entanglement in fishing gear, overfishing of prey, and global climate change.

Q: What do penguins eat?
SW: Penguins dine on a diet of shrimp-like crustaceans called krill, as well as fishes and squids.

Q: How big do they get?
SW: Penguins come in many sizes - from big and small, they have them all.  The emperor penguin stands at 3.7 ft. (1.1 m) and weighs 60 to 90 lb. (27 - 41 kg) - that's about the size of a small kid.  The smallest is the fairy penguin, standing at just 16 in. (41 cm) and weighing about 2.2 lb. (1 kg).  It's hard to believe, but penguins that lived in the past likely stood 5 to 5.9 ft. (1.5 - 1.8 m) tall and weighed about 200 to 300 lb. (90 to 135 kg).  That's bigger than most people!