Do penguins lay eggs or do they give birth to young?
D. Eggs 1. Eggs may be white to bluish or greenish. The shape varies among species. In Humboldts and Adélies the egg is more or less round. In emperors and kings the egg is rather pear-shaped, with one end tapering almost to a point. 2. Egg size and weight varies with species. From the records of SeaWorld’s successful penguin breeding programs, emperor penguin eggs measure 11. 1 to 12.7 cm (4.4-5 in.) long and weigh 345 to 515 g (1 2.1-18 oz.), and Adélie penguin eggs measure 5.5 to 8.6 cm (2.2-3.4 in.) and weigh 61 to 153.5 g (2.1-5.4 oz.). 3. A nest of eggs is called a clutch, and with the exception of emperor and king penguins, clutches usually contain two eggs. (Emperor and king penguins lay a single egg. ) A clutch with more than one egg presents a better chance of at least one chick surviving (del Hoyo, et al., 1992). a. In the Eudyptuia, Spheniscus, and Pygoscelis genera, the first-laid egg is generally larger than the second, and usually hatches first (except in the chinstrap s
An Adelie egg is slightly larger than a large hen’s egg and shaped the same. An Emperor’s egg is much bigger, up to 15cm long and 12cm diameter with a conical top and a spherical bottom. The picture on the right shows an Adelie penguin’s egg hatching (see the beak of the chick beginning to break the shell), and on the left picture I’m holding an emptied Emperor’s egg. Emperors don’t build nests: they carry their eggs balanced on their feet, under their belly. They usually don’t move much, but if they take a big step, like to catch their balance or to flee, then they drop their egg; and once their egg is out of their pouch they will not recognize it anymore. The egg promptly dies, freezes and cracks and eventually falls into the bottom of the sea when the sea ice melts off in spring. So we had the possibility to recover and clean some abandoned eggs. The first Emperor penguin egg was found on floating ice in 1840, without knowing its origin. Wilson saw it in a museum and recognized it a
Penguins form monogamous pairs for a breeding season, though the rate the same pair recouples varies drastically. Most penguins lay two eggs in a clutch, although the two largest species, the Emperor and the King Penguins, lay only one. With the exception of the Emperor Penguin, in all penguins share the incubation duties. These incubation shifts can last days and even weeks as one member of the pair feeds at sea. Penguins generally only lay one brood; the exception is the Little Penguin which can raise two or three broods in a season. Penguin eggs are smaller than any other bird species when compared proportionally to the weight of the parent birds. Sources: http://en.wikipedia.