When I think of sub Saharan Africa, animals come to mind. Big animals. The most famous are the so-called “Big 5”: lion, elephant, rhino, buffalo and leopard. They’re named as such because they’re the ones that fight back when hunted. They’re not your average Joe animal that you encounter anywhere, and they are indeed a sight with which to be reckoned. But there’s one creature that was the most surprising to meet here. They typically live in Antarctica under very harsh, cold conditions. Mild South African weather doesn’t seem like their cup of tea. However, here they are, at the Southern tip of Africa. The very cold south Atlantic Ocean waters gave them an in! The African Penguin 🐧(aka Jackass Penguin because they bray like a donkey) has adapted and calls the Southern most shores of South Africa home. Sadly, they’re endangered due to loss of habitat caused by human activities, but seem to thrive in a few protected colonies in South Africa.
On the other hand, a success conservation story is the Southern Right Whale. Unlike the endangered North Atlantic Right Whale, the Southern Right Whale population is increasing because of conservation efforts. Its very name explains why we almost drove it to extinction. It’s called “right” because it’s the right whale to hunt: it moves slowly and floats after being killed. They’re very quiet mammals and communicate by scent and breaching (jumping out of the water).
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