King Penguins at Edinburgh Zoo
"Wherefore doth a living man complain, a man for the punishment of his sins? Let us search and try our ways, and turn again to the LORD. Let us lift up our heart with our hands unto God in the heavens."
It's not at all true that penguins are flightless birds. They are perfectly designed to fly. However, when a penguin goes flying in search of its food, it doesn't search in the air, but in the water.
The king penguin is one of the world's greatest flyers in water. Scientists have attached scientific recording devices to the backs of king penguins. To their surprise, they learned that the bird dives deeper than 600 feet in search of its prey. Scientists also studied the penguins' metabolism. They were impressed by the fact that dives to 100 feet take very little effort from the penguins. Some birds averaged over 300 dives to various depths each day! This is especially impressive when you realize that the bird is holding its breath while making these dives.
The king penguin must reach such great depths because its primary diet, squid, are found at these depths. Scientists estimated that between 50 to 90 squid must be caught by the penguins on each trip to the sea. There must be enough squid to provide energy not only for the diving parent, but also for the chick back in the nest.
We should not think of the penguin as a bird that lost the ability to fly. The king penguin's wings are not designed for flight in the air. However, they are perfectly designed for flight in water. That's proven by the fact that they can reach such great depths and are so effective in catching squid. Even penguins glorify their Creator!
Notes: J. A. Miller. 1982. "Deep Dives at Sea with King Penguins." Science News, August 21, p. 119.
Photo: Photographed by Sean Mack. Licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license.
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