Like any other bird species, adult penguins follow the tried and true tradition of raising their young close to the nest and then shoving them off to fend for themselves when they’re old enough. In doing so, their young penguin chicks get the uncensored whole nine yards, complete with real-world challenges, competition, and valuable life lessons.
As the parental unit gives its young penguin a push, the chick slowly ventures away, being careful not to stray too far. Its first steps are clumsy as it learns to balance itself and navigate rocky slopes. As it fumbles, it may find its way into uncharted territory, sometimes belonging to other penguins who don’t take too kindly to intruders.
A few pecks at the head later, and the baby penguin learns not to invade another penguin’s territory. Still, it sticks close to the nest and practices its rock-climbing technique. At this point in the baby penguin’s life, the parental unit recognizes that it’s time for the youngling to start working for its food. Rather than handing the young bird food on a silver platter, it’s directed to compete with other penguins.
In time, the baby penguin gets so good at walking on its own two feet that it can run faster than a human and find food on its own. The parent’s work here is done.