Friday, 13 June 2014

The Royal Gathering of the Penguins

What a sight !! Another masterpiece of the beautiful nature.  One lakh penguins on a sea shore. Yes, it's true. St. Andrew's Bay on the island of South Georgia serves as a host to to over one lakh Penguins every year, where the king penguins come ashore to raise their young. People who get a chance to see and photograph this nature's bounty in their lifetime are indeed lucky. Seen from far, it seems like a party going on , but come a bit close, you will realize that these lovely penguins are just keeping the egg warm, so that they can have healthy children. 

       Penguins at St. Andrew's Bay (Image Credits : Arthur Morris)                                  
South Georgia , surrounded by the Southern Ocean is one of the stormiest regions in the world. But St. Andrew's Bay in South Georgia is one of the few places which provides both shelter and easy access to the sea. The parents take turns and keep the egg warm and cushioned by resting it on their feet and protecting it using the warm fold of feathers and fat. The egg remains in this position for nine weeks.
The penguin crew gathers in such huge numbers so that they can keep the predators away,who are always looking for prey. All of them maintain a short, yet exact distance between themselves. Yes, it's a disciplined penguin crowd !! The brown ones which you can see in the picture are 10 month old chicks which were hatched the previous year. They are dependent on their parents for the food, until they are 14 months old. 

It's a tough two months for the penguins, protecting the egg, as well as feeding the previous year's child, but they do it , all together.  I wonder at times, how perfect and fascinating the nature is. 

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 Trekking in the untouched Tirthan Valley of India