In order to study the effects that climate change is having not only upon the environment, but also on wildlife, a group of scientists from the University of Strasbourg decided to send a robotic baby penguin into a colony of penguins, and this video shows what happened when the newcomer arrived.
What appears as a cute stuffed baby penguin is actually a land rover that has been camouflaged so that it would not frighten the wild, typically nervous birds. The innovative robot made it possible to gain valuable data without having humans interfere with the penguins' habitat and cause them unnecessary stress.
After 34 penguins had external heart monitors placed on their bodies, the RFID antenna on the robot was able to get up close to the animals to get readings. But what is most noteworthy is the fact that the penguins actually welcomed the new strange looking penguin, with adults singing to it and babies huddling around it, confused that the robot didn't vocalize back to them.
Plans are already in place to make even more realistic penguin robots in the future. For now, check out this video to see the success story in action.