African Penguins

African Penguins

When I did my blog on Cape Town earlier this year, I learned for the first time there were penguins in Africa. So, I decided I would have to do a blog about these wonderful, flightless birds. They live in a colony at Boulders Beach, an aptly named portion of the coastline near Cape Town since massive boulders line the shore where the penguins live.  From the videos below, you’ll see that African penguins are adorable, fascinating and somewhat used to having humans around. 

Here’s a 3-minute video featuring African Penguins. Here’s a 1-minute video of a penguin who sauntered into the local lodge and just didn’t seem to want to leave. Fun. Here’s a 1-minute video featuring penguins swimming.

FunFacts about African Penguins: (Source)  

  • Basic Information, quote: The African penguin (Spheniscus demersus), also known as the jackass penguin and black-footed penguin, is a species of penguin, confined to southern African waters. It is also widely known as the “jackass” penguin for its loud, donkey-like bray, although several related species of South American penguins produce the same sound. Like all extant penguins it is flightless, with a streamlined body, and wings stiffened and flattened into flippers for a marine habitat. (Source)
  • African penguins feed primarily on squid and fish.
  • The African penguins’ nearest relatives are the Humboldt penguin and Magellanic penguin found in southern South America.
  • African penguins are about 60–70 cm (24–28 in) tall.
  • Where African penguins can be found, quote: The African penguin is only found on the south-western coast of Africa, living in colonies on 24 islands between Namibia and Algoa Bay, near Port Elizabeth, South Africa. It is the only penguin species that breeds in Africa and its presence gave name to the Penguin Islands. (Source)
  • The rate of decline of the African penguin is severe. The species is expected to be extinct in the wild as early as 2026.
  • Here is the main reason for the severe decline over the past century, quote: As recently as the 1970s, African penguin eggs were considered a delicacy and were still being collected for sale. Unfortunately, the practice was to smash eggs found a few days prior to gathering, to ensure that only fresh ones were sold. This added to the drastic decline of the African penguin population around the Cape coast, a decline which was hastened by the removal of guano from islands for use as fertilizer, eliminating the burrowing material used by penguins. (Source)
  • An oil spill in 2000 added to the struggles of African penguins to thrive in our modern industrial world. But conservationists were encouraged by how the penguins responded to the rescuers and are hopeful that extensive captive breeding programs might be the answer for keeping these penguins in the wild.

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(Photos from Pixabay) 

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July Winners: Sherdina A., Linda K. and Kim C.!!!

June Winners: Mary M., Amy S., Mary P., and Suzi D!

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To be entered into the giveaway drawing, please leave a comment about Penguins. Did you know Africa has penguins? Which photo did you like best? Feel free to share whatever comes to mind and share from the heart.

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49 thoughts on “African Penguins

  1. I do love penguins.

    We have a large colony of Fairy Penguins on Phillip Island here in Australia. We waited in the cold and dark for hours to see them.

  2. Love the pictures! I enjoyed the videos too. It’s a shame that they think these African penguins might be extinct in the wild as early as 2026. Thanks for sharing this information about these fascinating penguins.

  3. I didn’t know that penguins resided in South Africa. I love watching the antics of these birds and am sorry to hear that this particular breed is on the verge of instinction. Hopefully, mankind can keep them thriving.

  4. I love penguins, my daughter has about 25 stuffed penguins – she started collecting them when we first took her to the zoo when she was one. In that first video the babies were bigger than the mom – so cute. Thanks for sharing, will be sure and share with my daughter.

  5. I loved the pictures and videos that you showed. You keep me learning more every time you do something special in your blog. I never knew penguins lived outside the arctic region. It must be very hot in Africa and yet they live there. And reading some of the comments, I also learned that they exist in other places. I will have to do some research and see what else I can learn. They say you are never too old to learn and I have come to believe that. Thank you so much for taking the time to teach us more about our world.

  6. Enjoyed the photos and videos. Loved the video of the penguin in the Lodge-too funny! Never realized they had penguins in South Africa. Why can’t people leave nature alone and hope they get to do something before these adorable penguins become extinct! AZ

  7. I’m not sure I knew penguins also lived in Africa, but I’m not surprised it’s in the southern area of Africa. They look adorable. I’ve only seen penguins in captivity.

    denise from maryland

  8. It is a shame that people destroy the eggs that are left over. I would think people would leave the eggs and let them hatch to ensure the supply of eggs never runs out. That would be the way to work side by side with nature not destroy it. Just my thoughts.

  9. I love their walk. Wish I could be as graceful….LOL

    One of the best documentaries I ‘ve ever seen was March of the Penguins.

    Very impressive.

  10. I love penguins. They have some at our zoo and I love to watch them. And ofcourse Happy Feet is one of my favorite movies.

    • Maureen,
      I know! He acted like he really didn’t want to leave. Maybe they were serving fish for lunch, lol!

      Caris,
      Buckeye, Arizona USA

  11. I love penguins! They are just too cute! I always think of them in snow so it was a little weird to see them playing in the sand.

  12. It’s sad to hear that, once again, humans are directly responsible for putting another species on the pathway to extinction. Hopefully, people will wake up before it’s too late to save these charming birds!

  13. Never thought of penguins in Africa. They are cute little creatures. When I was little I had a big stuffed penguin that I carried so much I wore it out. I thought my momma threw it away but years later I found it in a closet. She had kept it after all. Stay cool Caris. I heard your all’s heat was going to be in the triple digits.

    • Oh, Marie, we’ll be 113 today and we’re supposed to be 116 tomorrow! But it is the desert! I have a cactus wren that’s taken up residence on my patio. I always keep my window slightly ajar to keep fresh air flowing and he’s discovered the beauty of a thin stream of air conditioned air. Of course, my cat occasionally bats at the drapes, lol!

      Caris,
      Buckeye, Arizona USA

  14. Great images! Loved the one in the grass!!! Reminded me of my one year old grandson who learned to walk in grass the first time on the 4th of July. Wonder if Hugh Jackman did his penguin selfie in Africa or Australia.

    Drea – South-central Arizona

  15. I think penquins are neat especially the way they come out of the water. It is terrible that any species become extinct. I hope they will be able to save them.

  16. My niece loves penguins. Whenever we visited the New England Aquarium. I know we’ll be at least an hour watching the penguins swim and play.

  17. We have lovely little penguins in South Australia. Smaller again than these. Great to see the African version. Thank you

  18. I agree I have to agree with Patsy, I never knew Africa had Penguins!!! Thank you so much for sharing new things with us stay at home bodies!!!!! 🙂 I am just now learning a little about the internet!!!!!

  19. Penguins are one of the coolest creatures on Earth! It seems so strange to see them without snow.

  20. There are so many different kinds of penguins. I sure didn’t realize that. Thanks for providing such a good education for us. Calgary, Alberta, Canada

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