Penguins may live in chilly regions but they sure melt our hearts. As the global community celebrates World Penguin Day on April 25, here are 10 fun facts about these tuxedo-wearing, waddling, flightless birds.
1. Twice a year, the world celebrates having these elegant birds around. World Penguin Day is celebrated every 25th of April while Penguin Awareness Day is celebrated every 20th of January.
2. There are 17 penguin species around the world to date, many of which are threatened by the devastating effects of climate change.
3. The emperor penguin, which stands between 36 and 44 inches tall, is the largest of all penguin species in the world. The emperor penguin is perhaps also the most popular of all penguin species that have graced many animated films, including Disney's Happy Feet.
4. Penguins spend around 75 percent of their life in the sea. While many photos show the birds in huge colonies on chunks of ice, these birds actually prefer the water where they search for food such as squid, krill and fish.
5. Penguins sleep while standing up and with flippers out to help maintain the desired body temperature. They also huddle to keep warm. Many people think penguins don't sleep because they are seen on their toes most of the time.
6. Like you and me, penguins can get sunburned when they are in places that are closer to the equator. If you've even seen a penguin use its flippers to cover its feet while walking on land, that's their way of preventing sunburn.
7. All penguin species are carnivorous. Depending on how much food is readily available, they fight each other for food sources. While some prefer hunting near the shores, others can also dive deeper into the water for more food.
8. Some penguins can reproduce as early as 3 years of age, especially the smaller penguin types. The larger ones mature later, between 3 and 8 years of age.
9. Penguins are romantics, well at least to some degree. Many penguin species often find one life-long partner and can even find them among thousands of penguins in the mating grounds. Aww.
10. Female penguins can lay up to two eggs for every successful conception. All couples across penguin species take turns to incubate the eggs until hatching.