“When the [penguin] chicks hatch, they are the cutest thing ever in the world,” says Juan Romero, senior keeper at the Central Park Zoo. They are pretty adorable—see for yourself in this video. The zoo is raising eight chicks: four chinstraps and four gentoos.
Journalist Jeff Rubin saw these species in the wild on a voyage to Antarctica. He wrote about the fantastic adventure for Audubon in “Frozen in Time”:
|At Hannah Point, on nearby Livingston Island, gentoo and chinstrap penguins feed their voracious chicks as elephant seals repose in a wallow during their weeks-long annual molt, their scabrous skins flaking off in ragged pieces. The ponderous, belching masses bring to mind a group of flatulent, drunken frat boys.
Under gray skies the next morning in aptly named Paradise Harbor, we take to tandem kayaks, wearing seawater-activated emergency beacons around our necks for safety. Glaciers spill down the flanks of the mountains girding the bay, but the water is flat calm. Penguins swim by, porpoising out of the water before diving deep. On several drifting icebergs, seals rest, unconcerned, as we paddle past.
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