The African Penguin is found exclusively in South Africa and Namibia. It is related to the infamous Galapagos Penguin that is found in the pacific and is thought to be one of the first penguins discovered by humans. The African Penguin is distinctive from it’s clean black and white markings and it’s sharp peak, as well as black feet and dot-like markings across it’s white chest. Generally speaking the males are slightly larger than the females, but both are fairly the same size as each other making them sometimes indistinguishable. They are the only penguin that does not inhabit places with a very cold climate with temperatures that are often below freezing. Instead, they will gather on rocky islands off the shores of Africa and Namibia where they make burrows that are sheltered from the sun. Like all other penguins they are very sociable and after breeding the female usually lays 2 eggs and both the female and male will take care of the young. They will tend to breed with the same partner for much of their life. They like a diet made of fish such as sardines and mackerel and they will dive down to 200 metres or further to hunt for food. They have a large number of predators since they both inhabit land and the ocean. Land-based predators include snakes and mongoose, and ocean-based predators include sharks and seals, which they try to dodge and escape with their agility and speed of around 20kph when in the water. Today the African penguin is threatened due to habitat loss caused by humans, though major colonies still exist near Port Elizabeth in South Africa, which is arguably the best place to see them.
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