African Penguin

The only penguin species in Africa!
African Penguin Scientific Classification
Scientific name
Spheniscus demersus
African Penguin Physical Characteristics
Grey, Black, White
10 – 15 years
Top speed
12.4 mph
2kg – 5kg (4.4lbs – 11lbs)
African Penguin Distribition

African Penguin Classification and also Development

The African Penguin is a little to tool sized Penguin species that is located along the coastline of South Africa and also on a variety of its bordering islands. The African Penguin is believed to be most very closely pertaining to the Humboldt and also Magellanic Penguins located in southerly South America, and also the Galapagos Penguin located in the Pacific Sea near the Equator. The African Penguin was called for the reality that it is the only species of Penguin that is located reproducing on the African Shore, and also it is thought to be among the very first Penguin species to be found by humans.

African Penguin Makeup and also Appearance

The African Penguin is a rather distinct species of penguin with tidy black and also white markings and also a dramatically sharp black beak. The African Penguin additionally has black feet and also a variety of dot- like markings flecked throughout its white breast which are stated to be as distinct to the private Penguin as a Human finger print is, in addition to a slim black band. The male African Penguin is normally a little bigger than their female equivalents yet both are relatively comparable in appearance. Among the African Penguin’s most distinguishing characteristics is that they have pink glands over their eyes which assist them to handle the pleasant environments. The hotter the African Penguin obtains, the much more blood is sent out to these glands so it might be cooled down by the bordering air, which consequently, makes these glands much more pink.

African Penguin Distribution and also Environment

The African Penguin is located on the south- western coastline of Africa, residing in 27 nests on 24 islands in between Namibia and also Algoa Bay, near Port Elizabeth, South Africa, with the biggest swarm located on Dyer Island, near Kleinbaai. African Penguins are most largely dispersed around the cool, vitamins and mineral abundant waters of the Benguela Current where there is an abundant supply of food. Although they invest a lot of their time mixed-up, African Penguins collect in nesting websites on rough islands where they invest their days in protected burrows to stay clear of the warm sunlight. They are among the only Penguin species to be located in non- cold problems and also handle this by tunneling, arising at sunset and also dawn, and also making use of the pink glands over their eyes to cool down the blood down.

African Penguin Behaviour and Lifestyle

Like several various other Penguin species, African Penguins are exceptionally friendly birds, with grownups creating set bonds that last forever (as long as one decade). African Penguins can frequently be seen brushing each other, which is not just sensible for cleansing functions, yet additionally for eliminating bloodsuckers and also also simply reorganizing plumes, frequently enhancing the social bond in between both. Their courtship screens are frequently extremely loud as the male and also female Penguin phone call to each various other making use of a collection of donkey- like noises. African Penguins are additionally understood to send to an area of showering just a few meters from the coast, which they are believed to do fairly on a regular basis to both tidy and also to cool themselves down in the warm.

African Penguin Recreation and also Life Process

African Penguins start to reproduce at the typical age of 4, when a male and also female will certainly pair, and also have a tendency to reproduce with each other for the remainder of their lives. The female African Penguin either digs herself a burrow or locates a dip underneath a rock or shrub, in which she lays 2 eggs. The eggs are nurtured by both moms and dads for approximately 40 days, when just one of the eggs will generally hatch out. The African Penguin chicks are fed and also maintained cozy by their moms and dads frequently up until they are a month old when they start to be left by themselves, creating crèches with various other chicks for security frompredators They have a tendency to stay with their moms and dads up until they are in between 3 and also 5 months old, when they will certainly leave the swarm (this is dependant though on the supply and also high quality of food in the location). The chicks go back to the swarm after a number of years to molt right into their grown-up tuft. African Penguins normally live for in between 10 and also 15 years.

African Penguin Diet and also Target

The African Penguin is a meat-eating animal that, like all various other Penguin species, makes it through on a diet that is just included aquatic microorganisms. Shoaling fish consisting of Anchovies, Sardines, Steed Mackerel and also Round Herrings comprise the mass of the African Penguin’s diet, in addition to the periodic Squid or Shellfish when regular food remains in brief supply. The structured body of the African Penguin enables it to relocate via the water like a rocket, efficient in getting to a full throttle of around 20 kph when searching for food. African Penguins capture their victim by diving right into the sea midsts for around 2 mins each time. Although they usually most likely to midsts of around 30 meters, it is not unusual for them to be located searching greater than 100 meters underneath the water’s surface area.

African Penguin Predators and also Hazards

The African Penguin’s smaller sized dimension suggests that it has several predators both in the water as well as additionally ashore. Their aquatic predators are largely Sharks and also Cape Fur Seals, yet the greatest hazard to them ashore is not simply to the grown-up Penguins, yet much more the vulnerable eggs and also chicks. Kelp Gulls and also Scared Ibises take advantage of them from the air and also Mongooses, Snakes, and also Leopards have actually been observed searching them on ground. The African Penguin has actually additionally been badly impacted by Human task in their indigenous areas, with populaces believed to have actually taken a radical decrease, mostly as a result of the exploitation of their eggs for food when they were very first found. They are additionally badly impacted by the disturbance of their all-natural environments.

African Penguin Fascinating Realities and also Attributes

Penguins have much more plumes than any kind of various other bird, which serve as a water resistant layer maintaining their skin completely dry. African Penguins moult annually which they do back in their nests. The entire procedure lasts for around 20 days, in which time, the African Penguins can not swim or eat, and also can shed virtually fifty percent of their body weight. African Penguins are understood to invest extended periods of time angling out mixed-up, and also relying on the location, can take a trip in between 30 and also 110 kilometres in one journey. Nevertheless, those African Penguins that have chicks to feed, will seldom go that much, capturing food closer to the coast, and also as rapidly as feasible. The African Penguin is additionally referred to as the Jackass penguin, as a result of the donkey- like phone call that they make throughout their courtship routines.
For even more intriguing realities, review “10 Unbelievable African Penguin Realities.”

African Penguin Partnership with Humans

It is extensively thought that African Penguins was among the very first Penguin species ahead right into call with Humans, as a result of the reality that they are located on the pleasant South African coastline instead of in the heart of Antarctica. This nonetheless, does not appear to have actually functioned to the bird’s benefit as their eggs were swiped for food (slowing down the price of recreation), and also the manure utilized in nest structure was collected for fertilizer. Today, various other dangers deal with the African Penguin consisting of competitors for food from business angling and also oil air pollution in the water. Just a little handful of nesting websites can be accessed by travelers, yet the Penguin’s anxious nature of individuals suggests that these locations need to be purely checked.

African Penguin Conservation Status and also Life Today

Today, the African Penguin is thought about to be a vulnerable animal and also has actually been detailed as being Endangered by the IUCN. It is assumed that today’s African Penguin populace of about 22,000 reproducing sets, is much less than 10% of the populace that existed in 1900. By the 1950s, the African Penguin populace had actually cut in half, and also it had actually after that cut in half once again by 1980. There is an approximate 2% decrease in the African Penguin populace each year, mostly as a result of the Human intake of their eggs, competitors for food and also environment disturbance.


  1. David Burnie, Dorling Kindersley (2011) Animal, The Definitive Visual Guide To The World’s Wildlife
  2. Tom Jackson, Lorenz Books (2007) The World Encyclopedia Of Animals
  3. David Burnie, Kingfisher (2011) The Kingfisher Animal Encyclopedia
  4. Richard Mackay, University of California Press (2009) The Atlas Of Endangered Species
  5. David Burnie, Dorling Kindersley (2008) Illustrated Encyclopedia Of Animals
  6. Dorling Kindersley (2006) Dorling Kindersley Encyclopedia Of Animals
  7. Christopher Perrins, Oxford University Press (2009) The Encyclopedia Of Birds
  8. African Penguin Information, Available here:
  9. African Penguin Breeding, Available here:
  10. African Penguin Appearance, Available here:
  11. African Penguin Behaviour, Available here:
  12. About African Penguins, Available here:

Relate animals

Abyssinian Guinea Pig

They are one of the oldest breeds of guinea pig

Ackie Monitor

The ackie monitor has a spiny tail which it uses as in self-defense.


The Albertonectes had the longest neck out of other Elasmosaurids.

American Bully

Though the American bully was bred to look intimidating, it makes an extremely friendly family pet!

Latest Animal News