According to PenguinScience.com some species typically swim around 5 mph when swimming over long distances. However, some have been clocked at speeds of 40 to 100 m.p.h. in short bursts.
Some penguin species have been known to spend over 75% of their life at sea. Different species of penguins are morphologically different, and therefore have different average swimming speeds. The genus Aptenodytes (King Penguin and Emperor Penguin) are known to be the fastest of all the penguin species. Emporers have been recorded going as fast as 9mph. Smaller species, like the Fairy Penguin are usually slower swimmers and have been recorded going an average of 2mph. Shorter bursts of swimming are faster.
Gentoo penguins of the Antarctic area can dive and swim up to speeds of 22 miles an hour. This makes them the fastest of all diving birds.
The Adélie Penguins can reach speeds of around 5 mph. But if being pursued by leopard seals or pursuing their prey, they can move 5 to 6 times this speed.
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