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African Penguin

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African Penguin

Sign up today to support
our effort to assess 160,000
species like the African Penguin by 2020

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African Penguin

Sign up today to support
our effort to assess 160,000
species like the African Penguin by 2020

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Endangered
AMAZING SPECIES

African Penguin

Spheniscus demersus

The African Penguin, Spheniscus demersus, is listed as Endangered on The IUCN Red List of Threatened SpeciesTM. It is confined to southern African waters and breeds at 25 islands and four mainland sites in Namibia and South Africa. It has been recorded as far north as Gabon and Mozambique.

This species of penguin is undergoing a very rapid population decline, which led to its uplisting to Endangered in 2010, largely attributed to food shortages due to commercial fishing and environmental fluctuations. Other threats include: egg collection, guano collection, oil spills, competition with Cape Fur Seals, Arctocephalus pusillus, for food and displacement from breeding sites (and is a periodic predator), mortality from fishing nets and predation by sharks, Kelp Gulls, Larus dominicanus, and feral cats.

The African Penguin is protected by listings on Appendix II of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES), and on Appendix II of the Convention on Migratory Species (CMS). In South Africa, all breeding localities are national parks, nature reserves or otherwise protected. Collection of guano and eggs is also prohibited. The SANCCOB oil spill rehabilitation centre also needs to be continued and maintained.