EN
African Penguin Spheniscus demersus



Taxonomy

Taxonomic source(s)
del Hoyo, J., Collar, N.J., Christie, D.A., Elliott, A. and Fishpool, L.D.C. 2014. HBW and BirdLife International Illustrated Checklist of the Birds of the World. Lynx Edicions BirdLife International, Barcelona, Spain and Cambridge, UK.
del Hoyo, J.; Collar, N. J.; Christie, D. A.; Elliott, A.; Fishpool, L. D. C. 2014. HBW and BirdLife International Illustrated Checklist of the Birds of the World. Barcelona, Spain and Cambridge UK: Lynx Edicions and BirdLife International.

IUCN Red list criteria met and history
Red List criteria met
Critically Endangered Endangered Vulnerable
- A2ace+3ce+4ace A2ace+3ce+4ace

Red List history
Year Category Criteria
2016 Endangered A2ace+3ce+4ace
2013 Endangered A2ace+3ce+4ace
2012 Endangered A2ace+3ce+4ace
2010 Endangered A2a,c,e; A3c,e; A4a,c,e
2008 Vulnerable A2a,c,e; A3c,e; A4a,c,e
2005 Vulnerable
2004 Vulnerable
2000 Vulnerable
1994 Lower Risk/Near Threatened
1988 Threatened
Species attributes

Migratory status not a migrant Forest dependency Does not normally occur in forest
Land mass type Land-mass type - continent
Average mass -
Extent of occurrence (EOO)

Estimate Data quality
Extent of Occurrence breeding/resident (km2) 3,920,000 medium
Extent of Occurrence non-breeding (km2) 120,000 medium
Number of locations 28 -
Fragmentation -
Population and trend
Estimate Data quality Derivation Year of estimate
No. of mature individuals 50000 good estimated 2015
Population trend Decreasing good observed -
Decline (3 years/1 generation past) - - -
Decline (5 years/1 generation past) - - -
Decline (10 years/1 generation past) - - -
Decline (10 years/3 generation future) 51 - - -
Decline (10 years/3 generation past and future) 51 - - -
Number of subpopulations 1 - - -
Largest subpopulations 100 - - -
Generation length (yrs) 10 - - -

Population justification:

In 2015 the overall number of pairs was about 25,000 pairs, or 50,000 mature individuals. This roughly equates to about 80,000 individuals in adult plumage based on the conversion factor of 3.2 for pairs to individuals (Crawford and Boonstra 1994).






Trend justification: The population in Namibia declined from 12,162 pairs in 1978 to an estimated 5,800 pairs in 2015. The South African population declined from c. 70,000 pairs in 1978/79 (Shelton et al. 1984) to 19,300 pairs in 2015. Decreases in both countries amount to > 50% in three generations (Kemper 2015, Hagen 2016).


Country/territory distribution
Country/Territory Occurrence status Presence Resident Breeding Non-breeding Passage
Angola N Extant Yes
Congo V Extant Yes
Gabon V Extant Yes
Mozambique N Extant Yes
Namibia N Extant Yes
South Africa N Extant Yes

Important Bird and Biodiversity Areas (IBA)
Country/Territory IBA Name
Angola Iona National Park
Namibia Ichaboe Island
Namibia Lüderitz Bay islands
Namibia Mercury Island
Namibia Namib-Naukluft Park
Namibia Possession Island
South Africa Algoa Bay Islands: Addo Elephant National Park
South Africa Bird Island
South Africa Boulders Beach
South Africa Dassen Island
South Africa Dyer Island Nature Reserve
South Africa Overstrand
South Africa Robben Island
South Africa West Coast National Park and Saldanha Bay islands

Habitats & altitude
Habitat (level 1) Habitat (level 2) Importance Occurrence
Marine Coastal/Supratidal Sea Cliffs and Rocky Offshore Islands major breeding
Marine Intertidal Rocky Shoreline suitable breeding
Marine Intertidal Shingle and/or Pebble Shoreline and/or Beaches major breeding
Marine Neritic Pelagic major non-breeding
Marine Neritic Pelagic major breeding
Marine Oceanic Epipelagic (0-200m) major non-breeding
Marine Oceanic Epipelagic (0-200m) major breeding
Shrubland Temperate suitable breeding
Altitude   Occasional altitudinal limits  

Threats & impact
Threat (level 1) Threat (level 2) Impact and Stresses
Biological resource use Fishing & harvesting aquatic resources Timing Scope Severity Impact
Ongoing Majority (50-90%) Rapid Declines Medium Impact: 7
Stresses
Indirect ecosystem effects, Species mortality
Climate change & severe weather Habitat shifting & alteration Timing Scope Severity Impact
Ongoing Majority (50-90%) Slow, Significant Declines Medium Impact: 6
Stresses
Ecosystem degradation
Climate change & severe weather Storms & flooding Timing Scope Severity Impact
Ongoing Minority (<50%) Causing/Could cause fluctuations Low Impact: 5
Stresses
Ecosystem degradation, Reduced reproductive success
Energy production & mining Mining & quarrying Timing Scope Severity Impact
Past, Unlikely to Return Majority (50-90%) Slow, Significant Declines Past Impact
Stresses
Ecosystem degradation, Ecosystem conversion
Energy production & mining Oil & gas drilling Timing Scope Severity Impact
Future Majority (50-90%) Slow, Significant Declines Low Impact: 4
Stresses
Species disturbance, Species mortality
Human intrusions & disturbance Work & other activities Timing Scope Severity Impact
Past, Unlikely to Return Minority (<50%) Slow, Significant Declines Past Impact
Stresses
Species disturbance
Invasive and other problematic species, genes & diseases Invasive non-native/alien species/diseases Timing Scope Severity Impact
Ongoing Minority (<50%) Slow, Significant Declines Low Impact: 5
Stresses
Reduced reproductive success
Invasive and other problematic species, genes & diseases Problematic native species/diseases Timing Scope Severity Impact
Ongoing Majority (50-90%) Slow, Significant Declines Medium Impact: 6
Stresses
Competition, Species mortality
Invasive and other problematic species, genes & diseases Problematic native species/diseases Timing Scope Severity Impact
Ongoing Majority (50-90%) Slow, Significant Declines Medium Impact: 6
Stresses
Reduced reproductive success
Invasive and other problematic species, genes & diseases Problematic native species/diseases Timing Scope Severity Impact
Ongoing Minority (<50%) Slow, Significant Declines Low Impact: 5
Stresses
Species mortality
Natural system modifications Other ecosystem modifications Timing Scope Severity Impact
Ongoing Majority (50-90%) Rapid Declines Medium Impact: 7
Stresses
Ecosystem degradation
Pollution Industrial & military effluents Timing Scope Severity Impact
Past, Likely to Return Majority (50-90%) Rapid Declines Past Impact
Stresses
Ecosystem degradation, Reduced reproductive success, Species mortality
Transportation & service corridors Shipping lanes Timing Scope Severity Impact
Past, Unlikely to Return Majority (50-90%) Rapid Declines Past Impact
Stresses
Species mortality

Utilisation
Purpose Primary form used Life stage used Source Scale Level Timing
Food (human) Whole Adults and juveniles Wild Non-trivial Recent
Food (human) Whole Eggs Wild Non-trivial Recent
Food - human - - - Non-trivial Recent
Pets Whole Adults and juveniles Wild International Non-trivial Recent
Pets/display animals, horticulture - - - International Non-trivial Recent

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2017) Species factsheet: Spheniscus demersus. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 20/10/2017. Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2017) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 20/10/2017.