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|December 9, 2012 - Tracy Camp|
|Wow, what a way to wind down my time in Africa! Today SANCCOB was short staffed. Usually on most days we have about nine to 10 people in to care of the birds. Today, because most of the volunteers are already finished in their time here, we only had three people to care for the pens, plus two people to run the chick rearing unit. Even Margaret, the CEO, came in to help do laundry and cleaning and Nikki the manager came in to help feed a few pens. Now that's team work! Mostly it was just me, Marguerite and Jackie—a volunteer from Australia. We started the day at 6:30 a.m. and wound up finishing at about 8 p.m. Good thing I have already been here two weeks and have gained the experience in most of the areas so I knew what to do and what was needed. We worked together well as a team and just went from pen to pen to pen making sure every penguin chick, adult, pelican and cormorant got all of the food and treatments that was needed. We managed to also get all of the cleaning done and even were able to prep some things for the next day. With approximately 200 birds in the facility including the home pen birds, and each bird needing anywhere from four to 10 feeding or treatments a day, it was a lot of work. But we managed through and we even had quite a bit of fun together while doing it! While taking care of the birds that were already in the facility, several calls came in for other birds that people had found in need of help. A couple more chicks came in today. More importantly, there were calls coming in that several oiled birds were spotted at Stoney Point. These birds that were spotted were what they consider to be 100% oiled. Four of the oiled birds were brought into the facility. But there are a couple more out there that they are aware of but just couldn't get to yet. Hopefully they will get them into the facility in the next couple of days. The SANCCOB staff is worried that there might be an oil spill out there that just hasn't been reported yet. They are hoping to get the government to do a fly over soon to see what is out there. Oil is such a dangerous threat to all wildlife. Please remember that even if you don't work with animals like we do and aren't able to directly care for them in a hands on way, there is still many things you can do to help protect them. Conserving your use of oil is just one of the many ways you can help. The less oil we use on a daily basis, the less oil that needs to be transported through the oceans. It's very simple. Take shorter showers, turn down the heat by as little as two degrees and carpool to work. If you would like more direct ways to help save the African penguin go to www.sanccob.co.za. Become a SANCCOB volunteer or adopt a Christmas chick. Christmas chick packages make great holiday presents. The packet includes a picture of the penguin you adopted with its personal story. Each adoption helps fund the care and feeding of those chicks to help get them back to the ocean.|
Skittish African Penguins cross a road on Robben Island in South Africa.
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