Belly Flop! Watch Penguin Chicks Plunge, Plummet, and Plop off Huge Ice Cliffs

Nobody knew why some six-month-old emperor penguin chicks routinely marched toward 15-meter cliffs in Antarctica.

Most of their peers waddled up to low curbs of ice to contemplate their first swims, but these flightless young souls went where eagles dare. They stared into the void, then committed their pudgy, downy frames to it.

The capable Bertie Gregory captures and narrates the action. Some plump jumpers actually dive with varying degrees of grace. Others just flail.

Photo: Screenshot


Whether you call it a swimming lesson or a lemming imitation, it’s decidedly the cutest of either I’ve ever seen.

Sam Anderson

Sam Anderson takes any writing assignments he can talk his way into while intermittently traveling the American West and Mexico in search of margaritas — er, adventure. He parlayed a decade of roving trade work into a life of fair-weather rock climbing and truck dwelling before (to his parents’ evident relief) finding a way to put his BA in English to use. Sam loves animals, sleeping outdoors, campfire refreshments and a good story.