27 September 2009

Walking with Penguins...(Simonstown, South Africa): September 27, 2009

Our afternoon activity was to check out the famous Simonstown penguin colony. This colony at Boulders Beach is one of just a few on mainland Africa, but what a colony it is. A gentle boardwalk led us down to the beach where Jackass (African) Penguins lounged around under, next to, and almost on top of the boardwalk for all to see. A crowd of onlookers took in the "penguin parade" but the birds themselves seemed completely unmoved by all the fuss: they have been "performing" here for decades after all. While we all buzzed excitedly around them (just a few feet away), they just dozed in the afternoon sun, or scratched one another (known as allopreening), in a seeming state of oblivion to the surrounding horde. Many of them were going through various advanced stages of moult, leaving many looking bedraggled, and far from at their best, unsightly bits of fluff hanging off their normally immaculate "dinner suit" plumages from various places. All-in-all, a must visit spot if you ever find yourself "stranded" in Capetown!

1 comment:

john said...

Great Penguin photos. I'm planning a trip to South Africa in the next few months. I visited Tropical Birding's office in Quito a few years ago, and traded some small paintings for a stay at your lodge in Tandayapa. It was all great. Your posts about South Africa will be very helpful for planning my trip.