Penguins Filmed Their Own Videos of Antarctica, and the Footage Is Incredible
Now you can see how the cuter half lives.
For the first time ever, scientists have retrieved footage from cameras attached to Gentoo penguins that live off the icy shores of Antarctica, and the findings have been incredible.
The tiny GoPro “penguincams” have not only shown researchers how penguins live their daily lives, they have also revealed a distinct penguin call that seems to aid the flightless birds as they take short dives in the Antarctic waters.
Twenty-six Gentoo penguins were studied by the research team over two breeding seasons, carrying the tiny cameras as they went about their days. Won Young Lee and other researchers from the Korea Polar Research Institute recorded a total of 598 penguin calls off the shores of King George Island in Antarctica.
“Penguins spend a lot of time in the ocean, but how they communicate at sea is poorly understood. What surprised us was that they seem to use offshore calls to attract other individuals,” Young Lee told Science Alert.
The penguin honks, while being pretty adorable to human ears, are multi-functional in exchanging information amongst the penguin population. According to Science Alert, they use signals to exchange information, form groups, and coordinate movements.
It was previously thought the calls were meant to help other penguins find food, but researchers have begun to question that theory. Instead, they say calls seem to have more to do with group formation and how the penguins interact with each other.
The team hopes to learn more by capturing more videos of the penguins’ behavior.
"We do not know why these penguins produce calls or how they recognize these calls in the open ocean," Young Lee said. "We suspect that there are other mechanisms involved in vocal communication."