FISHING LINE ENTANGLED PENGUIN

October 08, 2018

This fishing line entangled African penguin was spotted by the skipper of Dreamcatcher, the Dyer Island Cruises boat, just off Kleinbaai on the 17th September 2018. The penguin was heavily entangled with line tightly wound through the beak, around the neck, flippers and feet preventing the bird from swimming or diving. The penguin was exhausted and drowning was imminent.

The team from Dyer Island Conservation Trust immediately launched Happy Feet, a smaller rubber duck that allows them to operate in shallow water. The penguin was rescued and rushed to the African Penguin and Seabird Sanctuary. The APSS team together with Dr Marc Walton commenced with "plastic surgery" immediately.

Thankfully, this story has a happy outcome and Sindile (meaning ‘I survived’ in isiXhosa) is doing well. Most often we find only the remnants of seabird carcasses with deadly fishing line filaments. Since 2010, the Dyer Island Conservation Trust has been managing the fishing line bin project. Through this project, the Trust increases public awareness of the negative impacts of fishing line debris and encourages correct disposal by a network of unique fishing line bins strategically placed along the South African coastline.

To support our fishing line bin project, donate here.