African Penguin


Status: Endangered

  • Major threats include human disturbance of nesting sites, oil spills, and food shortages.
  • The total population was estimated at 141,000 breeding pairs in 1956-1957, but only about 25,000 pairs remain.

What the AZA Community is Doing

  • In the last 3 years alone, 20 AZA-accredited zoos and aquariums contributed ~$95,000 to African penguin conservation efforts.
  • The AZA African Penguin Species Survival Plan® (SSP) Program plays a lead role in conservation initiatives to help penguins in the wild, and cooperatively manages > 800 African penguins in ~50 AZA-accredited zoos and aquariums to ensure a genetically diverse and healthy population.
  • AZA SAFE will further these efforts by harnessing the collective power of the 230 AZA member institutions and our 180 million visitors, connecting partners, and creating and executing a conservation action plan to help penguins in the wild.

Read more about African penguin conservation on >

How You Can Help


Spread the word! Let your friends and family know that African penguins need our help.

ZAmap1200x900Visit: Your visit to an AZA-accredited zoo or aquarium not only supports the well-being of the animals you see, but also supports conservation efforts. Find an institution near you

SAFE_TailsUpGuess who? Download our free TailsUp! app and play with your friends. It’s free to download but offers in-app purchases – and 100% of AZA’s proceeds supports conservation work. Available on the iTunes store and Google Play.

alex_and_ani_penguinWear your penguin love! We’ve teamed up with Alex and Ani on a penguin bangle! 20% of proceeds go to AZA for conservation. Get yours here


Meet the Penguins of AZA

Meet the Colony

“It may be the waddling. Or their sophisticated tuxedos. Or perhaps it’s the fact that they are highly social and form long-term bonds. Whatever the reason, penguins have a knack…

Penguin Cam: Audubon Aquarium of the Americas

Live video by Animal Planet L!ve Penguins This exhibit is home to both Rockhopper Penguins from South America and African Penguins. They are both temperate climate birds who prefer warmer…