December 9, 2005
The movie March With The Penguins had a deep effect on me. So much so that we incorporated seeing penguins into an already overscheduled trip. Empire penguins featured in the film are different from the Magellan penguins we saw in Punto Tombo, Peninsula Valdez, Patagonia, Argentina.
Magellans are smaller and not as pretty as Empire penguins but anything standing at 2 ft tall is extremely cute! These little guys were cute and small enough to pick up and hold. They're fine with human interaction and comfortable coming right up to your side but to take it one step further and hug the penguins, which I wanted to do, was not advised! Drats! I would have loved to give them a big squeeze. As soon as I have wireless connection again I'll upload pictures.
500,000 penguins live in the Punto Tombo colony. Only 50% of the chicks survive and they have a life expectancy of about 30 years. They hobble along slowly on land but cut through water with lightning speed. Muy rapido! Our timing was perfect. We saw newly hatched chicks resting underneath their parents bellies for warmth and safety.
The landscape around Peninsula Valdez made me homesick for the Andes. It's boring and there's nothing in the horizon to look at except miles and miles of flat land and fauna.