Where to find the Penguins in South Africa

Where to find them? - Ten islands and two mainland sites support the African penguin along the Western Cape coastline, and a further six islands in Algoa Bay in the Eastern Cape.

Seven of these support 80% of the world's African penguin population. The most important in South Africa are Dassen Island, St Croix Island, Robben Island, Bird Island, Dyer Island and Boulders beach (technically not an island).

Did you know? An emperor penguin travelled 3 200 kilometres ending up on a beach in New Zealand, where he promptly swollowed a lot of sand, mistaking it for snow – he's been nicknamed 'Happy Feet'.

Namibia's penguins are found in a group of islands and rocks along a 355 km stretch of coastline known as the Penguin Islands. Together they measure 2.35 square kilometres, the largest of which, Possession Island, is 0.90 km˛.

Mainland sites in South Africa include Stony Point, and Boulders Beach. Mainland colonies do well because the towns or human settlements function as barriers, keeping predators away from the penguins in much the same way as an island protects them.

Although for tourists these colonies allow a 'bird's eye view' of the penguins in their natural habitat, endearing the diminutive waddlers to those passing through, living in such close proximity can bring its share of problems.

Betty's Bay residents made news around the world, late in 2012, complaining about the 'badly-behaved' group of penguins who had taken advantage of a recently broken fence to wander into local gardens, braying all through the night and leaving numerous rather smelly calling cards in people's gardens. Mainland penguin colonies then appear to be a safe haven for the African penguin, whose numbers have swelled in Betty's Bay, despite their endangered status.

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All About The Penguins

Want to see african penguin in their natural habitat? In South Africa the African Penguin is found mainly on islands off our shoreline. It has also taken up residence amongst us in mainland colonies. Find out about the African Penguins...

The Penguin Route

Mainland Colonies

Offshore Colonies

Where to find Penguins in South Africa

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