I am norwegian doctor who worked as expedition doc on the Antarctic research station Troll for the summer season 2007-2008. NB: This blog is intended as a personal and ecological account from The Ice Planet - fully independent of the Norwegian Polar Institute, their official web page being: npweb.npolar.no

12 Nov 2007

First penguins seen

Only 33 degrees south, still dressed in shorts and sandals, we came across these penguins today.
This is the globally threatened African Penguin, and might well be the only penguins I'll see on this expedition. These two have come temporarily ashore with several hundred other African penguins over the last months, for the purpose of discarding their old feathers ("moulting"). While waiting for their new feathers to grow out, they hang out on Boulders beach right outside Cape town to keep warm and dry. Ever since 1985 the penguins have been regular visitors to this beach. They come here to breed, moult and party. Why choose this particular seaside resort? Because of the shallow, un-trawled and fish-filled waters of the False Bay, and because the strong human presence keep their natural predators away. Both penguins and tourists seem happy with this arrangement.

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