Gone were the days where there were no fences. Fences are now built in the name of animal protection. Sadly these small buddies have dwindled in numbers over the years. Estimation: There are only 2000 of them left!!!
On the other hand, I don’t understand why they need protection from visitors. (in my mind) They KNEW that they are protected and they were fearless around human. Before the fences were installed, they walked right up to me…. my sandwich was a victim of petty theft. Anyways, it used to be free to see them.
One of their worst enemy is oil spills. Once the penguin get oiled, the below will happen:
- They ingest it when preening themselves, resulting in poisoning.
- They die from hypothermia because their natural insulation will no longer work.
Other cause of death? our rubbish. They can suffocate and die a horrible death from a small wrapper. Be vigilant with what you leave behind on Boulder beach. A small wrapper may cost the penguin’s life.
How to help African penguins?
If you spot an oiled or loner penguin, alert SANCCOB. They have an 24/7 specialist emergency team to rescue the birds.
TABLE VIEW CENTRE (Head Office)
Tel: +27 (0)21 557 6155
After hours & weekends: +27 (0)78 638 3731
CAPE ST. FRANCIS CENTRE
Tel: +27 (0)42 298 0160
After-hours & weekends: +27 (0)82 890 0207
SANCCOB is a non-profit organisation aiming to conserve seabirds and other sealife. If you have the means, it will be for a good cause to adapt a penguin or become a volunteer.
I really enjoyed seeing these small penguins as a child, I hope that they will still be around for the next generations to come.
VERY IMPORTANT: They are endangered, but NOT cuddly. Their beaks are razor sharp and can bit off a finger or cause serious cut. Please do not attempt to touch them or feed them.
This beautiful stretch of a beach is SUPER windy. If you have long hair, please tie it all up before you regret it *LOL*
How to get here?
Boulders Beach Penguin Colony, SANparks. Cape Town, South Africa.
Official site: http://www.capetown.travel/attractions/entry/Boulders_penguin_colony
Driving DIY is probably the only option (approx 1 hour from Cape Town via M3 or M5). Otherwise you can attempt the train / bus. As a local South African, I will highly recommend that you rent a car and drive. SA public transport in general is highly unreliable (what schedule?).
Entrance fee SAR65 for adults and SAR35 for kids *as of Nov 2015
**The South African rand is highly volatile. I recommend that you exchange as little cash as possible (for money value reason).
Related posts: Safe vs Dangerous photo – Safari, South Africa
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I love these guys! We visited Cape Town late last year and we’re going again next weekend – hope to get down to see them, especially as we will be staying close by this time 🙂
Thank you for reading, Clara. Wish you a great time in the sunny Cape Town 😀
They are so cute 🙂 I want a penguin for me. Can you bring him to me, Joyce 🙂 Beautiful post. I hope they will not disappear
Thanks, Monica. Well, I don’t think they’re good pet material *LOL*
wow! I just did a photo post on these wee fellows. https://readerinspiredphotos.wordpress.com/2016/02/04/98-penguin/
I didn’t realise they were endangered. It was a good few years ago that I was there and there were no fences then. I hope they make a strong comeback!
Ja, I wish that they’ll come back strong too. Will be so sad if they become extinct.
Thanks for sharing the penguins Joyce, beautiful images and story. They are very endangered with those numbers, hence the fences. I guess predators would be a huge issue on land and in the sea and of course as you point out, the plastic waste from ignorant/lazy humans. I continue to be astounded how so many animal/bird/insect/fish species have become extinct or are rapidly going that way and one species, humans breed out of control and speed up the extinction of others.
Thank you, Denis. It is a rather difficult situation. I guess if people are more aware, things can only get better.