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Montevideo, February 21st 2019 - 16:22 UTC

Penguin Awareness Day

Monday, January 21st 2019 - 15:33 UTC
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Some one million penguins live in the Falklands, basically five different groups, King, Gentoo, Rockhopper, Magellanic and Mararoni  (Pic. by Derek Pettersson) Some one million penguins live in the Falklands, basically five different groups, King, Gentoo, Rockhopper, Magellanic and Mararoni (Pic. by Derek Pettersson)

Penguin Awareness Day is an unofficial holiday which is celebrated annually on January 20th. This holiday is used to celebrate and commemorate these fascinating flightless birds which are loved by people all over the world. It’s also a day to bring attention to the plight of these birds whose numbers seem to be shrinking faster and faster each and every day.

While no one knows exactly when Penguin Awareness Day was created or by whom, it is known that the term “penguin” first appeared in print form during the 1500s. It was a name that was originally applied to a short-winged black and white diving seabird known as an Auk. A bird that is now extinct. However, the origin of this word is still largely unknown. Some people say that it comes from the Welsh word “gwyn”, a word which means “white-head.”

Penguins are fun animals which are loved by people everywhere. Which is probably why people spend so much time exchanging fun penguin facts. Below are some facts about these majestic aquatic birds:

• Emperor Penguins can be as large as 3.7 feet tall – making them the largest of all penguins

• Penguins can dive as fast as 7.5 miles per hour

• The earliest known penguin lived over 65 million years ago

• There are 18 different species of penguins

• Most penguins are monogamous

• The average wild penguin can live up to 20 years

• All penguins live in the Southern Hemisphere

The best way to celebrate Penguin Awareness Day is to spend the day learning everything you can about these fascinating birds. Things which include diet, how they live, where they live and how climate change has affected them. If there is a zoo exhibit in your area that features penguins, then this day is a good day to take the family out to see it.

For those of you who want to spend the day inside with a good movie instead of going out to your local zoo, you can always watch one of the many penguin-themed movies and documentaries that exist. These include: March of the Penguins, Happy Feet, The Madagascar Penguins in a Christmas Caper, Mr. Popper’s Penguins, The Penguin King and Surf’s Up.

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