55 Music Concourse Dr.
Golden Gate Park
San Francisco CA
Regular Hours:


9:30 am – 5:00 pm


11:00 am – 5:00 pm
Members' Hours:


8:30 – 9:30 am


10:00 – 11:00 am

The Academy will be closed on Thanksgiving and Christmas Day.

Planetarium will be closed Sep. 22, 23, 24

Live Penguin Cams 

December 20, 2008

Penguins and Polar Bears?

During the holiday season there are often pictures of penguins and polar bears together.  While the image of penguins and polar bears are endearing, they are not naturally found in the same location.  Polar bears live in the North Pole.  Two species of penguins live in the South Pole and all penguins live in the southern hemisphere.  The type of penguins that are at the Academy are found along the southern tip of Africa and never come in contact with Polar Bears.-Pamela Schaller

Filed under: CAS Penguin Colony,Penguin Science,Wild Penguins — Penguins @ 2:06 pm


  1. What does it mean when the penguins shake their heads quickly They seem to stop and shake their heads like “no, no, no, no.”

    Comment by Jessica Bowman — December 29, 2008 @ 2:50 pm

  2. When a penguin shakes its head towards another bird (or human) it is a submissive greeting that indicates familiarity. It is actually called the Head-Shake behavior.

    Comment by pschaller — December 30, 2008 @ 9:36 am

  3. What temperature range do the penguins like? What temperature do you keep the air and water in their environment?

    Comment by Claudia Jelden — December 30, 2008 @ 6:05 pm

  4. All species have different ranges. The African penguin’s water temperature and air temperature change throughout the year. Air temperature ranges from 63-73F and water from 55-65F in the exhibit.

    Comment by pschaller — December 31, 2008 @ 5:25 pm

  5. Not all penguins live in the Southern hemisphere. I was surprised to see penguins at the equator. The Galapagos penguins are about the size of a stuffed Opus my son once owned, and are the cutest birds I’ve ever seen!

    Comment by Linda Phillips — January 14, 2009 @ 11:32 am

  6. Your comment says that all penguins live in the southern hemisphere. We have a book (Emporer Penguins) that says that Galapagos penguins live north of the equator. Is that true? We loved the CAS it was “reallly cool and lots of science to look at” {per Kevin(5) and Nolan (3)}.

    Comment by Kevin and Nolan — January 14, 2009 @ 9:42 pm

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