Things To Do in Bettys BayWatch Penguins Play
Where? Clearly signposted from R44 Clarence Drive, Betty's Bay, Cape Overberg.
When? Daylight - By arrangement.
How? Call +27 (0)28 271-4742
How much? Free
Things in life aren't always black and white... except for the African Penguin. Of course things that are black and white leave little room for individuality... except for the African Penguin whose specific monochromatic markings are so unique that they personalise the birds like fingerprints on humans.
What may seem like conservative tuxedo colouring is in fact complex camouflage ensuring that when swimming the penguin's black back blends with the ocean to predators aflight and that the penguin's white belly reflects like sunlight to predators lurking the deep. These Black-footed Penguins also known as Jackass Penguins, due to their donkey like bray, breed only in Africa. Stony Point Breeding Colony is one of only two South African breeding colonies that are shore-based.
An abandoned Betty's Bay Whaling Station site where 300 whales were once killed annually for their oil (from 1917 - 1930) now gives birth to new life as penguins naturally selected breeding ground. The circle of life is best observed just after sunrise or just before sunset when the birds return from their 20km fishing expedition.
Penguins are monogamous and unlike humans there is no confusion as to who their partner is when mating calls (despite the fact that they all look alike!). Penguins return to the same nesting site for up to 15 years with no complaints about the lack of remodelling. Declared a protected area for this protected species; a wooden boardwalk takes visitors to Stoney Point nesting burrows while protecting the indigenous environment. Penguins breed throughout the year with a main breeding season being February.
The female lays two eggs with partners taking turns incubating the eggs for 38-42 days. At full waddling height the penguins reach 70cm weighing 3kg. This well groomed vulnerable species parades its authentic everyday life in a splendid sea-side setting suitable for a family visit or romantic inspiration.