A bird curator at the Natural History Museum in London recently (randomly) found a four-page pamphlet called The Sexual Habits of the Adélie Penguins, written in 1915 by Dr. George Levick — and the document proves to be more Penguins Gone Wild than National Geographic documentary.
Dr. Levick, surgeon and medical officer on the famous 1910-1913 British Antarctic Expedition Terra Nova, led by Captain Scott, wrote his findings after observing the penguins at Cape Adare, but what he found was apparently too risque for people to read in 1915. (Levick was so embarrassed to be writing it, in fact, that he wrote it in Greek.)
Thank God we’ve loosened up.
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“There seems to be no crime too low for these penguins,” he wrote, going on to describe the penguins as “little knots of hooligans”. He went on to describe the high frequency of sexual activity, autoerotic behavior, the hehavior of young unpaired males and females including necrophilia, sexual coercion, the sexual and physical abuse of chicks, non-procreative sex and homosexual behavior.
And to think they look so adorable and innocent. Happy Feet, indeed.