National Geographic : 1952 Sep
428 © Herbert G. Puonting A Nesting Adelie Warms Her Eggs in a Snowbank Adelies, which love to sit on eggs, show no dismay at being snowed in while brooding. Refusing to leave their nests for shelter, they stay for days if necessary. Fresh air comes to them through holes melted in the snow by their breath. At storm's end hundreds of beady eyes peer through the passages. When the mother finally breaks through, her feathers are stained with mire. Then father takes over while she takes a bath. Other penguin mysteries remain unsolved. No one yet has figured out why penguins per form marvelous swimming exhibitions, single file, like well-trained bathing beauties in an aquacade. At certain seasons of the year, too, the Adelies congregate by thousands on the edge of the sea ice to drill like soldiers. First they form small bands, like military squads; then these units fuse into regiments, and the drill ing begins. For hours the entire army maneuvers, turning about-face in unison, marking time with webbed feet, or marching in single or double file. Some scientists suggest that this unexplained habit may stem from a vestigial urge born of the days when penguins could fly. Then, like geese, they may have flown in military order. This most fascinating of all penguin puzzles may never be solved. Possibly if the little people" knew more about humans, they might wonder why soldiers act like penguins! INDEX FOR JANUARY-JUNE, 1952, VOLUME READY Index for Volume CI (January-June, 1952) of the NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC MAGAZINE will be mailed upon request to members who bind their copies as works of reference.