African Penguin Awareness Day: Boulder’s Beach, South Africa

Penguins are one of my favourite animals (I also like geckos, and giraffes, among others). The boy made me get up super early yesterday morning to go to the Boulder’s Beach Penguin Colony. I was annoyed, because I really wanted to sleep more, but what a good day we (he) chose to go.

When we got there early it was really quiet and we got some good face time with the penguins. They are not domesticated, but they are very curious, and would prance around for us and sometimes even came quite close to us. I just wanted to cuddle them. But they’re an endangered species so I would probably get fined for that, heh.

Image courtesy of The Boy

After a few hours we decided to leave for snacks… but just as we were leaving, a procession of SANCCOB volunteers arrived. (SANCCOB = South African Foundation for the Conservation of Coastal Birds) They were carrying these boxes… with PENGUINS in them. We hadn’t known it, but it was African Penguin Awareness Day, and SANCCOB was releasing 47 penguins back into the wild. Many of them had had oil slicks, injuries or been found as lost chicks.

penguin rescue

I don’t know why, but I got a little emotional. It was just wonderful to see how many people had turned up to witness these creatures be reacquainted with their natural habitat. The St Dominic School for Deaf Children even made it into a field trip, and it was wonderful to see how in awe children were of these little birds. Maybe I’m just a sap!

If I wasn’t a little overwhelmed, I would volunteer at SANCCOB. And yes, I am glad The Boy chased me out of bed.

I have two videos of the day. One was taken by Little Sister, and I’m having some trouble getting that on YouTube right now. Another was taken by The Boy. Look at how adorable the penguins are! Some of them were in the water like lightning, while others were a little more apprehensive. I couldn’t help laughing at the ones who took a dive and then ran back – “Okay, field trip was fun, said hello to the wild people, let’s go home now!”

Ah. Don’t you just love it?


  1. They (the penguins) remind me of some people that I know, but can’t swim

  2. Awww. This reminds me of when I was 15 and I went to South Africa and saw penguins on the beach. Beautiful country.

    1. You’ve been! Awesome! You should come back for another visit sometime.

  3. bulldog says:

    One of my favourite places to go when we visit the Cape… loved the vid clip…

  4. BadGluteus says:

    Haha. You look so cute with those penguins!!!

    1. Awwww shucks 😉 thank you!

  5. Nancy Ackelson says:

    Hi Mariechen, I love the top picture, beautiful to see you together with the penguins. So glad you happened upon the APAD, what a special treat! My vote is that you are no sap, but rather that you do have a deep and open heart…and that is a good thing!

    1. Thank you so much, Nancy. Can’t believe it took me this long to go to Boulder’s Beach! Please know that you are always welcome for a return visit to SA 🙂

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