INTERNATIONAL AFRICAN PENGUIN AWARENESS DAY



The African penguin is found only on the southwestern coast of Africa in only 29 known colonies. Unfortunately, the population has declined over 95% since pre-industrial times and they are from 2019 in The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. There are only around 42000 left in the wild. According to some estimates, they can go extinct in this decade if current climate change and human activity trends continue.


Roughly four million African penguins exist at the beginning of the 19th century.

The African Penguin relies heavily on small fish such as anchovies and sardines, which are in short supply due to overfishing as well as the changes in the marine ecosystem caused by climate change and humans. They have to go further from shore and are thus at greater risk. Pollution, habitat loss and disease are also contributing to the decline. The main predators of African penguins are jackals, hyenas, seals, sharks.


Out of the 1.5 million African penguins estimated in 1910, only about 10% remain at the end of the century.



FUN FACTS

  • Penguins spend up to 80% of their lives out at sea.

  • Penguins don't have teeth. They swallow fish with the help of fleshy spines inside their mouths.

  • Many male penguins give rocks to female penguins to woo them — females use rocks to build a nest.

  • The deepest dive recorded for this species is 130 meters.



Source: nationaltoday.com, penguins-world.com, earthday.org



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