Have you ever seen a penguin? Do you think they can fly? Let me begin by answering the most common question, why do penguins not fly? To be honest, there are several reasons. It depends on their height, weight, body structure, and many more reasons. This might have got you all wondering why penguins have wings. This is because these wings are so shaped that they would be essential for swimming. Let us now enlighten ourselves about the reasons why can’t penguins fly.
1. Why do Penguins have Wings?
To start with why do penguins not fly, you must know the importance of their wings which makes them professional divers, with species such as the emperor penguin that can dive to 6,000 feet (1,500 m) underwater. To do this, their wings are reverted to those of a bird of prey.
- They have faster, stronger wings that work more efficiently than the wings of flying birds.
- Unlike most swimming birds, penguins use their flexible wings to propel themselves instead of their toes.
- The small wingspan reduces drag whenever possible. (See 9 Differences between Mule and Donkey)
2. Why can’t Penguins Fly?
Why do penguins not fly? Flying is hard work and requires a completely efficient respiratory system that utilizes oxygen in the air quickly and efficiently.
- The penguin’s lungs are modified to keep its air underwater, making it much higher than any other bird.
- Another major reason they may have lost the ability to fly is that flying is a passion for excess energy, and they need all the energy they can get to keep themselves warm. It seems that there is not enough green energy for a few people, and they passed it on to the penguins over the years, as swimming works very well because there is not much energy to deal with. Also, check out the 14 interesting facts about mammals.
- Many birds use their energy for flight, and the delightful chook is a close relative of the penguin, the Wandering Albatross. It uses air to increase its flow time which allows it to use as little electricity as possible during its migration.
- The penguins’ feathers are tiny and close together, forming a water-repellent layer.
- Also, the feathers of different birds are simple and cover a very large area. Underwater, they prove their worth. But their wings are not very flexible, and their upper surface is too small to carry a penguin in the air.
- In some birds, mammary glands are about half their normal weight. The penguins’ chest muscles are strong, but they are not strong enough to fly.
- The bones are thick and strong, with no holes in them, and they do not allow them to swim, preferring to just float in the water. (Also read Do Penguins Have Knees?)
3. Is Evolution Responsible for their Nature?
Why do penguins not fly as there are very few types of birds that can swim like penguins? Actually, the thick-billed murre chicken is closely associated with penguins, yet it can glide beyond the ability to swim and the murre requires a lot of energy to move its wings to fly faster. According to National Geographic, the murre uses more energy than any other chook for flying. On a number of occasions during the evolutionary record of penguins, it became more evident for penguins to stop flying and realize their potential to swim and catch food. So they evolved as flightless birds as their wings became efficient for swimming. Gradually penguins lost their ability to lift themselves off the ground and also their bones also got thick over time, thus making them more suitable for swimming. (Also read What Animal has the Longest Pregnancy?)
4. How their Weight is Responsible?
Why do penguins not fly? Part of what keeps the penguins from flying is their large bodies. Unfortunately, their heavy bodies make it very difficult for them to fly.
- The body is large enough to help keep penguins trapped in cold, bloodless water. Their unique structure makes it easier to float in water.
- Because of their thick fibers, strong bones, and dense feathers, penguins weigh a considerable percentage of their total weight in flight. (See What does a Kraken Look Like?)
5. How do they get Access to Food?
Another goal of the penguins who were losing their ability to fly was to grow up to be more competitive underwater food.
- By being big green divers, penguins have penetrated deeper than various seabirds. This gave them access to food sources that other birds could not find. (See What Animal Eats Bananas?)
- Penguins spend as much as 75% of their lives in the water, coming to the shore to mate and reproduce.
- Penguins eat krill, squid, or fish, depending on the species, and they eat more at the same time as the sea.
- While on the ground, penguins are fast approaching. (See How Fast Are Crocodiles on Land?)
So, now you know why penguins have wings and why do penguins not fly. Penguins are beautiful and are in danger of extinction, especially because of global warming. We must try our best to protect this species. (See What Dinosaur Has 500 Teeth?)