Kelso is being treated for the bite wounds to his legs. Picture: SAAMBR

A juvenile African penguin – found on a South Coast beach earlier this month – is recovering from its bite wounds at a Durban marine rehabilitation centre.

The South African Association for Marine Biological Research (SAAMBR) said via its Facebook page that the young marine bird – named Kelso – had been found on the beach in Karridene on December 6. 

“Routine medical checks, such as blood taking and weighing, were done upon arrival at uShaka Sea World hospital. He weighed 4kg and was undergoing a moult from juvenile into adult plumage.”

The African penguin is suspected to have been bitten by a shark but this has not yet been confirmed. Picture: SAAMBR


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They found that he had sustained bite wounds across the back of both legs. Researchers suspected that the bird had been bitten by a shark but had not yet confirmed this.

“The right leg had the most serious damage. X-rays revealed no broken bones but some muscle damage. He was placed on antibiotics for the infected wounds as well as painkillers.” 

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Regular swimming as well as physiotherapy was also initiated, they said.

“We are happy to report that Kelso has now almost completed his moult and has stood up on his own for the first time. This is remarkable progress so far, but a long road still lies ahead.”

The Mercury