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December 16, 2008
The Chinstrap Penguin is one of two species characterized by a white face: the other being Royal Penguins. The bird’s short legs also produce a unique waddle, only observed in this particular species. Massive colonies inhabit the shores of the Antarctic Ocean and Southern Pacific. On average, adults reach a body mass between 6.6 to 11 lbs. (3 to 5 kg) and 28 inches (71 cm) in height. Females are smaller than males. Depending on the breeding cycle, both sexes will potentially lose weight. Mating sites consist of rocky outcrops and hillside slopes. During the winter months, individuals leave their breeding colonies and migrate north. The Chinstrap Penguin stays out at sea and only returns the next spring. Females lay two eggs in a circular nest fashioned out of stones. Each parent takes turns during the 37-day incubation, switching off every six days.