Painful death for 19 precious penguins

It was thanks to a quick-thinking jogger that a horrific attack on an endangered African penguin colony in Simon’s Town was ended. Our Wildlife Department was called to the scene of dead and dying African penguins on Seaforth Beach, where two free-roaming dogs had caused mayhem. The dogs killed 19 precious African penguins before an eyewitness managed to stop them, and followed them to their home.

With African penguin numbers already in decline, and only 150 penguins nesting at this world-famous breeding site, the dog attack has now reduced the number even further. There are numerous signs at the beach and in the parking lot that off-leash dogs are not allowed; and allowing dogs to run off-leash in a public space is a contravention of City by-laws.

We thank the jogger for preventing further deaths and for giving us an affidavit. The dogs were impounded and we will ensure that justice is served for these penguins, who suffered a traumatic death because of irresponsible dog owners.