Penguins are shy creatures, so studying them can be difficult. But researchers led by Yvon Le Maho of the University of Strasbourg in France have come up with a cunning solution.
They're created a Pingu-bot, a remote-controlled rover fitted with a scanning device which can study the animals, collect data and relay it back to the scientists.
To infiltrate the emperor penguin colony successfully they had to disguise the rover as a baby penguin. Initial attempts to just send in the rover sans baby just aroused curiosity and suspicion.
No doubt you'd feel the same if an unmanned rover came into your house and started driving about. But if it had a cute little baby sat atop, well.
The emperor penguins took to the robot so well it even managed to get in on a group hug. "Chicks and adults were even heard vocalizing at the camouflaged rover, and it was able to infiltrate a crèche without disturbance." says Le Maho.