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Bees Killed Endangered African Penguins

The Southern African Foundation for the Conservation of Coastal Birds said on Sunday that the swarm of bees has killed 63 endangered African Penguins on a beach outside Cape Town. David Roberts, a clinical Veterinarian said that after the test they found bee stings around the penguin’s eyes.

The veterinarian said that this is a very rare occurrence. They do not expect it to happen often. He also added that they found dead bees in that area.The protected birds on Friday were from a colony at Simonstown, a small town near Cape Town. The area is a national park and the Cape honey bees are part of the ecosystem.

Roberts also added that the Penguins must not die because they are already in danger of extinction. They are a protected species. The South African National Parks said the birds were taken to the foundation for post-mortems and samples sent for disease and toxicology testing.

SANCCOB’s initial post-mortem analysis found the Penguins had no external physical injuries, but multiple bee stings were found in all the carcasses. The Cape honey bees which are a subspecies of western honey bees are part of the same ecosystem and are not officially classified as threatened. Many factors such as diminishing food, pests, diseases and a growing threat from pesticides and insecticides pose a risk to them.

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