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Penguins Essay

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Below is an essay on "Penguins" from Anti Essays, your source for research papers, essays, and term paper examples.

The signature Species of the Southern Hemisphere (Antarctica) - the mascot if you will - is the penguin. There are not one and no fewer than seventeen species of penguins. Penguins are flightless birds in which several factors are contributing to the reduction of the penguin population. These contributing factors are both man-made and naturally occurring. “The origin of the word “penguin” has been the subject of debate for a long period of time. Researchers and historians’ theories range from reference to the amount of fat (penguigo in Spanish and pinguis in Latin) penguins possess to the claim that the word was derived from two Welsh words meaning ‘white head’.” (Sparks and Soper, 1987) Penguins are comical and funny birds. Blue/black on the upper half of their body and white on the lower half, they look as though they are all dressed up for a formal dinner or show but have no place to go! Penguins are flightless birds, which have adapted to living in the cooler waters of the Southern Hemisphere. They generally live on islands and remote continental regions that are free of land predators. Their inability to fly has been detrimental to their survival on land. Some species of penguins spend as much as 75% of their lives in the ocean, yet they all breed on land or sea ice attached to land. The seventeen species found today are thought to have evolved from flying birds more than forty million years ago. To date, the discovery of all penguin fossil fragments has been limited to the Southern Hemisphere. “Records show that prehistoric penguins were found within the range of present-day penguins.” (Sparks and Soper, 1987) All penguins have a very similar torpedo-shaped body form, which is conducive for swimming. They have a large head and a short neck with an elongated body. Penguin species vary greatly in size. For example, the Emperor penguin is the largest of the penguin species, standing 3.7 feet and weighing between sixty and ninety pounds. The smallest penguin in...

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