Tuesday, July 12, 2016

3 Brave penguins help put caracal back in its place

2016-07-11  - Louzel Lombard

Cape Town - Three brave and bad-ass penguins saved the day and the entire endangered African penguin population in Simon's Town over the weekend, when they assisted the City of Cape Town in successfully capturing and relocating a predatory caracal that had taken up residence in their midsts.

The caracal was responsible for the recent spate of endangered African penguin fatalities, which occurred in the area south of Links Crescent, close to Froggy Pond in Simon’s Town.

When the threat was first realised, a portion of the Simon’s Town shoreline was closed to members of the public in order to trap the cat.

But the attention-loving penguins Skipper, Kowalski and Rico would have none of it, and decided to help the City of Cape Town solve the murder mystery.

Following the success of the 'Penguins of Madagascar' animation, in which the human realm learnt about the penguins' secret ninja abilities, this news came as no surprise.

The crisis was solved swiftly and the Simon’s Town penguin-inhabited shoreline has been re-opened. 

The City of Cape Town announced over the weekend that the female caracal was successfully trapped at approximately 19:00 on Friday, 8 July 2016, at the south end of Froggy Pond.

The animal was tranquilised in a cage and examined by a local veterinarian. It was found to be in a healthy condition, and the veterinarian confirmed that the caracal was not lactating.

The cat, which was fitted with a tracking collar, was transported back to her original roaming territory in the Table Mountain National Park and released. It has been confirmed that the cat has settled down and its future movements will now be monitored.

(Photo: Supplied by The City of Cape Town)

The City of Cape Town wouldn't elaborate on the penguins' involvement in solving the mystery, due to their status being a matter of national security (how fitting). The City did say that "the three penguins used as live lures were released. They were unharmed and showed no signs of distress.

"We wish to thank everyone involved who assisted with this project to ensure a successful outcome for the penguins and for the caracal," the City of Cape Town said.

It might be a good idea to enlist these penguins to help solve the Betty's Bay leopard case, in which 33 penguins have already fallen victim to a spotted cat. 


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