It seems everywhere you look it is hard not to be reminded that we are in the holiday season. [Check out our Thanksgiving post here!] Your local department store has been decorated in red and green since Halloween, greeting cards are arriving in the mail, and there are Christmas TV programs and commercials on all the channels. Amongst all this holiday spirit you have probably seen a few images of penguins and polar bears sharing the holiday cheer together.
Remember this Coca-Cola commercial? [View the full commercial on YouTube here.] Well, can you identify what is wrong with this picture!? Here's a hint: it is not the fact that penguins and polar bears don't drink soda pop.
Even though they can live in similar types of habitats, you will never find penguins and polar bears living together in the wild.
Credits: photo on left by Ansgar Walk via Wikimedia Commons; photo on right by Aquarium Explorer in Residence Brian Skerry
Polar bears are found in the Arctic Circle region of the Northern Hemisphere. Penguins are found in the Southern Hemisphere ranging from the Galapagos Islands to the coast of Antarctica. They are separated by the warm waters around the equator.
The range of polar bears, seen in yellow
You can see penguin species' distribution in orange
Now the next time you get a greeting card or see a commercial with penguins and polar bears together, you can impress your friends and tell them that even though it is very cute and a great advertising technique it is never something you'll see in the wild.
Happy Holidays from the Penguin staff!
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The Aquarium is home to more than 80 penguins who live in a bustling colony found on Level 1 surrounding the Giant Ocean Tank. The Aquarium breeds African penguins as part of a Species Survival Plan and promotes education programs about penguins around the world.
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