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Penguins!

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Alexander Howard
1267279.  Mon Dec 18, 2017 3:10 pm Reply with quote

How have we got so far through P subjects without penguins?

For a remote bird which few of us will ever see outside a zoo, if that, they have an enormous grip on the imagination and culture - books films, and endless cuddly toys (yes - I have children).

They also appear on flags: I know of two (official) flags with penguins on them.

What does the popular imagination actually know about them? Many documentaries which show vast colonies on the edge of the ice, but they live elsewhere too: there are colonies just as thriving on the Falkland Islands, on the Tierra del Fuego and penguins too on the coasts of South Africa, Australia, New Zealand and even the Galapagos Islands.

In the Muséum d'Histoire Naturelle in Rouen there is a rather pointed display on why one must not confuse the pingouin with the manchot: A manchot is a flightless aquatic bird of the Antarctic and Sub-Antarctic regions (and a few tropical ones too); while a pingouin is a bird of the northern sea which both flies and swims (apart from the extinct grand pingouin, which was flightless). The museum seems peeved that ignorant Anglophones have mixed the words up.

A great auk has a white spot on head; in Breton 'white head' might be pen guin, but I am ready to be corrected. They bore a striking resemblance to the Antarctic birds which purloined their name, but were unrelated.

 
Kevans
1267282.  Mon Dec 18, 2017 3:59 pm Reply with quote

Thanks for this :) It is surprising we never got there earlier and really I think all flags would be improved with a penguin or two :)

Predictably I went straight to p.p.p.p.p.pickup a penguin that favourite from 1932 with terrible jokes such as "what do penguin sing on their birthday .... freeze a jolly good fellow" (h/t @penguinjokes, 1 ).

In 2008 (Clayton 2012, 2) they were the fourth most popular biscuit in the UK. On the same page it also mentioned that 10.37 am was the time office workers were most likely to want a snack.

So at what time are you most likely to see a penguin? ... 10.37 ... missed my calling writing their jokes

Also is 2014 at the height of "Monty mania" you know that John Lewis advert. Waitrose claimed that figures showed that in the week the John Lewis ad launched, Penguin biscuit sales were up 75%. (3)

Anyway found this statement on the website "nice cup of tea and a sit down .com" "According to McVite's web site the factory in Manchester that builds Penguins makes over 40,000 of them a MINUTE!! Now I've done some quick calculations and that's enough Penguins laid end to end in a year to go to the moon and back 4 times. So there we are, that's space exploration taken care of, we just need use earth based biscuit propulsion units." Now this is from 2002 so I don't know if that is true and I am struggling to verify but might be interesting rabbit hole! (4)


Unfortunately as penguins lack sweet taste receptors (as well as bitter and umami) they can't enjoy them... (5)

Sorry if that bit of 1970 esk snacking is not interesting

Thanks


Sources

1. @penguinjokes
2. The Nation's Favourite: The UK's Best-loved Things - Mathew Clayton(2012)
3. Marketing week
4. Nice cup of tea
5. Smithsonian ocean portal

 
Baryonyx
1267321.  Tue Dec 19, 2017 5:37 am Reply with quote

I fancy a snack...

 
tetsabb
1267331.  Tue Dec 19, 2017 7:20 am Reply with quote

You've earned one.
What will you have?

 
Baryonyx
1267338.  Tue Dec 19, 2017 7:48 am Reply with quote

Make mine a puffin!

 
Alexander Howard
1267339.  Tue Dec 19, 2017 7:54 am Reply with quote

Baryonyx wrote:
I fancy a snack...


In the Frank Wild sense?

 
Alexander Howard
1268627.  Wed Dec 27, 2017 9:50 am Reply with quote

Most penguins are British, according to the RSPB, which explains why they prefer formal evening wear.

 
Baryonyx
1269157.  Tue Jan 02, 2018 5:39 am Reply with quote

I heard the 'white head' bit was from Welsh but that may be up for debate among the Celtic linguists

 
suze
1269178.  Tue Jan 02, 2018 7:55 am Reply with quote

Very much so. It's either Breton-from-Welsh or Welsh-from-Breton, and we have no real way to know which.

Welsh and Breton are in any case closely related languages. If you were to place the same text in both languages side by side they mightn't look all that similar, but if you then placed the same text in Cornish in the middle of the two you'd go "Oh yea ...".

 
Alexander Howard
1270072.  Tue Jan 09, 2018 4:49 am Reply with quote

There are of course well established penguin colonies along the English Coast, or its off-shore islands.

 
Alexander Howard
1270610.  Sat Jan 13, 2018 8:55 am Reply with quote

Alexander Howard wrote:
There are of course well established penguin colonies along the English Coast, or its off-shore islands.


I was unable to get hold of the BAS report on the penguin colonies of the English Coast: no one visits the English Coast these days, even in the height of summer, so the penguin colonies were located by satellite from their guano.

BirdLife International however have identified an important Emperor Penguin colony off a large island of the English Coast.

 

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