The male emperor penguin and childcare

One of the oddities of nature is the male emperor penguin of Antarctica. What makes him so odd is that he excels at childcare — not always the strongest suit for the male of a species. And not just any childcare — he excels at childcare in extremely hostile conditions.  

After the female lays the egg, she takes off and leaves the egg under the care of the male — sort of the opposite of what happens among humans so often!

According to the documentary The March of the Penguins, the male is expected to care for the egg in temperatures that can reach 80 degrees below zero, and in winds that can reach 100 miles per hour. 

How does this male penguin do it? With a little help from his friends: He and hundreds of other dads left in charge of eggs drop their aggressive natures and huddle together into a single mass against the weather. They take turns standing over their eggs in the middle of the huddle where it’s warmer.

They make it through the power of unity.