World Penguin Day is celebrated internationally each year on 25 April to promote the conservation of these much adored, flightless birds. This year, we are appealing to the public to celebrate World Penguin Day by contributing towars the new seabird hospital being built at SANCCOB’S Cape Town Centre.
There are 18 penguin species in the world, of which the African penguin is the only one endemic to the African continent. Various factors like egg and guano harvesting, overfishing, marine pollution and climate change have caused a dramatic decline in the population from an estimated one million breeding pairs in the early 1900s to a current estimate of less than 23 000 breeding pairs.
SANCCOB has become synonymous with the endangered African penguin and operates three dedicated seabird centres in South Africa. As one of the oldest penguin rehabilitation centres in the world, the facility is in desperate need of improved and updated structures. Whilst the majority of the funds to initiate the project have been secured from the National Lotteries Commission, there is still a considerable shortfall to complete the project by the end of 2017.
A new seabird hospital is essential for SANCCOB to continue its seabird rehabilitation and urgent public support is needed to bring the final outcome to fruition.
“In 2018, SANCCOB will commemorate its 50th anniversary,” said Executive Director, Stephen van der Spuy. “From humble beginnings in 1968 to treating nearly 100 000 seabirds to date, our lifesaving work would simply not be possible without the aid of our supporters and volunteers. Collectively we can ensure that our future generations have the privilege of having the iconic African penguin in existence in their lifetime.”
Please join the campaign by donating a brick at just R50 ($4/€4/£3) and together we can achieve our goal of building a better future for the endangered African penguin.