Penguin Outlook Sanguine at Boulders


The threat of extinction looms over penguin populations worldwide, but at Cape Town’s own small colony on the mainland, the situation is rather less bleak. If you were a poet puzzling over rhyming couplets you’d even say – it’s sanguine!

A trip to Boulders Beach, where penguins waddle about like children, and tourists waddle about with them, yields plenty of visual evidence that the numbers are growing. This is true of both species.

In fact, the similarities between the birds and the people are so strong that we might as well not distinguish between the two for the rest of this post.

Moulting season’s over now, which means that the surf can once again be swum in, and the population is eating and drinking as much as possible after the long, arduous fasting months.

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The Jackasses, as they were once formally known, are out braying at each other in their distinctively loud voices, and scheming to find mates, build nests and breed offspring.

Everyone is happy when the tide is low, because there’s more beach to sun on, and, at most, the lapping waves are only 10 waddles away.

Occasionally, conversation will turn to the other burgeoning colony at the Cape, found on Robben Island, and the question will be posed, “I wonder when we should plan our visit?”

That was hugely enjoyable. Now to the vaguely useful part of the post: