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African Penguin

RebeccaBlackman

Tallahassee, United States

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This shot of an African Penguin was taken at SeaWorld Orlando. I had no idea Africa had penguins. Taken with a Canon T1i.
The African Penguin (Spheniscus demersus), also known as the Black-footed Penguin, is found on the south-western coast of Africa, living in colonies on 24 islands between Namibia and Algoa Bay, near Port Elizabeth, South Africa. Because of their donkey-like braying call they were previously named Jackass Penguins. Since several species of South American penguins produce the same sound, the African species has been renamed African Penguin, as it is the only penguin species that breeds in Africa. The presence of the penguin gave name to the Penguin Islands.

Two colonies were established by penguins in the 1980s on the mainland near Cape Town, namely Boulders Beach near Simon’s Town and Stony Point in Betty’s Bay. Mainland colonies probably only became possible in recent times due to the reduction of predator numbers, although the Betty’s Bay colony has been attacked by leopards. The only other mainland colony is in Namibia, but it is not known when this was established.

Boulders Beach is a tourist attraction, for the beach, swimming and the penguins. The penguins will allow people to approach them as close as a meter (three ft).

The closest relatives of the African Penguins are the Humboldt Penguin and Magellanic Penguins found in southern South America and the Galápagos Penguin found in the Pacific Ocean near the equator.

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Artwork Comments

  • Julie  White
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