Thursday, 7 March 2013

Infrared Images Reveal Frigid, Purple Penguins

image credit Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique

Emperor Penguins with blue bellies, green beaks, and red eyes huddle over a patch of black snow - a multicolored Antarctic landscape, as seen through the eye of an infrared thermal imager.

The psychedelic colors, which correspond to different temperatures, reveal that much of a penguin’s outer surface is cooler than the surrounding air - except, of course, for their unfeathered eyes, beaks, and feet.

1 comment(s):

Bogdan said...

...which means they have amazing insulation. All of the heat on the outer surface is leaking from the inside. Since penguins are relatively small animals, they need a relatively high blood temperature (higher than humans, anyway). Keeping a core temperature above our own while the outer layer is below Antarctic weather is quite amazing.