Sandy beaches along the coasts of South Africa.
Mostly fish such as anchovy and sardines, but also squid and crustaceans occasionally.
African penguins live large colonies, they dig burrows with their partner in which they build their nests and lay their eggs. They will venture out to sea to hunt for food. They are generally monogamous.
African penguins breed in the spring and autumn, avoiding having chicks in the heat of the summer. One or two chicks are hatched after incubating the eggs for around 30-40 days. The chicks are reared in the burrow until they reach their full size at around 9 weeks old. This is when they will start to venture out the burrow, but they still may depend on their parents for food for up to a year.
Human activities such as overfishing and global warming has massively declined the number of fish stocks that the African penguins rely on for food. Loss of habitat due to tourism is another major threat to this species.
They are classed as an Endangered species.
Living Coasts works closely with a South African bird charity SANCCOB, who are a leading marine non-profit organization with a vision to conserve seabirds and other sea-life, especially threatened African penguins.
If you love penguins, then why not adopt an African penguin here at Living Coasts? Adoptions make a real contribution to our vital conservation work for penguins and many other species.
- Latin Name: Spheniscus demersus
- Class: Birds
- Order: Sphenisciformes
- Family: Spheniscidae
- Conservation Status: Endangered
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