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Watch penguins enjoy a bit of iPad gaming

Turns out penguins love playing iPad games, perhaps as much as orangutans, pigs or you and me.

Sara Mandel, an aviculturist at the Aquarium of the Pacific, recently discovered that the penguins she cares for are big fans of Games for Cats, an iPad title that shows a little digital mouse running around on the screen.

"I was pretty new to the position so I decided, 'I wonder if they will play with this game?' because I had originally got it for my cats," she tells Cool Hunting. "And I put it down and he just started biting and messing with it."

And soon the game became a big hit with all of the penguins in the exhibit.

This isn't the first time animals have been introduced to video games.

In 2011, the Milwaukee County Zoo began working on a program to introduce encased iPads to its orangutans to help enrich the animals' lives.

"Orangutans are very tactile and their natural curiosity is perfect for a device like an iPad," Richard Zimmerman, executive director of Orangutan Outreach, told me at the time. "They are open to all types of enrichment and we think that the touchscreen 'games' will be really good for them- especially during the winter months in northern climates when they spend long periods of time indoors. Orangutans love painting with their fingers as well as brushes, and they seem to take quickly to using their fingers to paint on the touchscreen. We have a lot of different ideas we want to try with them and a lot of interest in the zoo community around the country."

In 2012, a group in Europe began developing another program to help bring games to pigs awaiting slaughter.

The idea for creating a video game that gets people to play with farm pigs through a computer tablet and a wall-sized projection screen came out of a study into the ethics of pig farming in the Netherlands by Clemens Driessen, an applied philosopher at Wageningen University.

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