This multi-partner project contributes towards saving the endangered African penguin, through hand-rearing abandoned and weak chicks, and rearing chicks from eggs. In addition, it forms a critical part of the African penguin Biodiversity Management Plan, which sets out the South African conservation strategy for the species. The hand-rearing of orphaned chicks has been identified as an essential and successful component of bolstering the wild population.
Since the project’s inception in 2006, SANCCOB has successfully released more than 7,000 chicks back into the wild. Independent research confirms that the survival rates for these hand-reared African penguins are similar to that of naturally-reared birds, making it an effective conservation intervention.
As an ongoing initiative, the Chick Bolstering Project has several fundable components, including costs associated with rescuing and rearing chicks during periods of mass abandonment.