By Diane Forrest,
When my husband was bedridden he had little else to do but watch television. He loved movies and would watch them over and over again. One of his favorite movies was called “Happy Feet”. It was a cartoon, a story about this penguin who could not sing. Penguins find their mate with a special love song, but without a song, he didn’t think he would find a mate. He did however another special talent had. He could dance, kinda like a penguin tap dance. Well it turned out that this dance not only won him the penguin girl of his dreams, it also saved his whole penguin village. I don't want to give too much away in case you haven't seen it.
Penguins are flightless birds who live in the southern hemisphere around Antarctica. Instead of wings, they have flippers necessary for swimming. They spend half their time on land, the other half in water. They appear to be very sophisticated, always dressed up in a tuxedo. They live on fish, squid or krill (a shrimp like creature).
During the mating season penguins head for special nesting areas on the shore. The area where penguins mate, nest and raise their chicks is called a "rookery".
When penguins are ready to mate, the male stands with his back arched and wings stretched. He makes a loud call and struts about to attract a female.
When the penguins find a mate, they bond with each other by touching necks and slapping each other on the back with their flippers. They also "sing" to each other so they learn to recognize each other's voices. Once a penguin finds a mate, they usually stay together for years -- for as long as they have chicks.
January 20 is Penguin Awareness day, so if you don’t have a chance to go by and watch some in action, take a look at this clip, and act like a penguin, put on your formal clothes, sing your song or do a dance, and eat some fish.