Why are there no penguins in the Arctic? If they are transported to the Arctic, can they survive?
In our impression, the Arctic and the Antarctic are almost the same. They are both ice and snow. If the conditions are similar, why is there no penguin in the Arctic?
In fact, penguins lived in the Arctic, but now they are extinct.
The great puffin, an Arctic Penguin
More than 500 years ago, early European navigators discovered a large bird on an island near the Arctic. He is nearly one meter tall. He has a pair of small wings, but he can’t fly. He shakes and shakes when he walks.
They are good at swimming and live on fish and shrimp in the sea. People call them big auks. Because it looks like a penguin, also known as the Arctic penguin.
However, there is no genetic relationship between the great auk and the Antarctic penguin. Their appearance is similar, which is a typical convergent evolution. In other words, in order to adapt to the similar living environment, they have evolved similar appearance and habits alone.
The great auk is monogamous all his life. He lays an egg on the bare rock every year, and the couple hatches together for one and a half months. This species has a history of at least 3 million years.
But with the advent of the era of great navigation, people began to hunt and kill the great auk crazily. Its meat and eggs were eaten as delicacies, and its feathers were made into quilts and hats. At that time, many European museums offered high prices to buy specimens of the great auk.
On July 3, 1944, three fishermen saw an egg hatching great auk on elder island. Two of them caught and strangled the couple. The other’s boots crushed their hatching eggs. This is the end of the last pair of great auks on earth. Unfortunately, another species has disappeared from the world.
Can they survive if they are transported to the Arctic?
Today’s penguins live in Antarctica. Their ancestors are tube nosed animals south of the equator. Because they can’t stand the equatorial current and high temperature, their ancestors didn’t choose to march north. Instead, they chose to live in the sea area where the Antarctic ice and snow melt or the icy water from the deep sea flow.
If penguins move from the Antarctic to the Arctic, they have to pass through hot tropical waters, which is too difficult for penguins without planes and air conditioning. Basically no penguin can tolerate temperatures above 30 degrees.
Penguins have few natural enemies in the Antarctic, and the Arctic is a paradise for large animals. If penguins are transported to the Arctic, they will not be able to compete with them.
What’s more, the Arctic is full of floating ice, which can’t provide a stable habitat for penguins, so they can’t survive in the Arctic.
Now you see, Antarctica is the perfect place for penguins.