Update October 3, 2016
Penguins all over: The colony in Boulders
Some years after our last visit to the colony of the African Penguins in Boulders, we wanted to look how they are doing. And they are very well, walking fearless inbetween all the people on the paths and sometimes using your beach towel if you don’t pay attention…
There are two beaches in Boulders where you can watch the penguins, Foxy Beach and Boulders Beach. After paying the entrance fee of 60 Rand (which is almost doubled compared to 2010 and soon will be R 65 - see SANParks tariffs here) per person we walked down to Boulders Beach. Here you can swim, and with a little luck you can even swim with the penguins while on the other beach you “only” can watch them from wooden boardwalks. We didn’t want to swim (we weren't even prepared), we just wanted to see what is going on at Boulders Beach which is a relatively small but nice beach, partially enclosed by granite boulders. It was surprisingly hot that day, and too many people spent some time here; no penguins could be seen.
When we already wanted to leave, suddenly a penguin came down the footpath, walking along with some arriving people. He didn’t care about the humans, just was a little bit cautious coming not to close. He passed Claudias feet in a distance of half a metre only, went straight over a beach towel and dived into the water, accompanied by curious children…
They must be used to this, the African Penguins. They started breeding in Boulders in 1982 with only two pairs, and the colony grew up to 3000 actually. This due to the reduction of commercial fishing in False Bay which led to an increase of the population of fishes the penguins like (anchovy and pilchards). The African Penguin is listed in the Red Data Book, so the growing of this colony helps to prevent them from disappearing from Mother Earth.
I think it’s worth to pay 60 Rand for it, isn’t it?
Have you already been to the Penguins? Share your experiences!