Penneshaw, South Australia

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South Australia
Penneshaw is located in South Australia
Coordinates 35°43′06″S 137°56′25″E / 35.71833°S 137.94028°E / -35.71833; 137.94028Coordinates: 35°43′06″S 137°56′25″E / 35.71833°S 137.94028°E / -35.71833; 137.94028
Population 265 (2006 Census)[1]
Postcode(s) 5222
Time zone ACST (UTC+9:30)
 • Summer (DST) ACDT (UTC+10:30)
LGA(s) District Council of Kangaroo Island
State electorate(s) Finniss
Federal Division(s) Mayo
Penneshaw harbour

Penneshaw is a township on the northeast coast of the Dudley Peninsula on Kangaroo Island in South Australia, and is the island's main ferry port with regular services from Cape Jervis. Penneshaw features a Maritime and Folk Museum, and evening tours to a colony of Little Penguin, the only species of penguin to breed in Australian waters. At the 2006 census, Penneshaw had a population of 265.[1]

Originally known as Hog Bay due to the pigs released by French Commander Nicholas Baudin, Penneshaw was named after a combination of the names of Dr. F.W.Pennefather,[2] private secretary to Governor Jervois, and Flora Louisa Shaw, The Times colonial editor, a visitor to Government House.[3]

South Australia's first modern seawater desalination plant was established at Penneshaw in the 1990s, to supplement the town's limited dam water supply.


  • Anglican Parish of Kangaroo Island Church of St Columba
  • Christmas Cove
  • Frenchman's Rock – In 1803 the French explorer Nicolas Baudin anchored in Hog Bay and one of his crew noted the arrival of the expedition by carving on a rock. The rock was later removed and is now located in the Gateway Information Centre. A replica now occupies the rock's original location on Penneshaw Beach.
  • Gateway Information Centre
  • Hog Bay
  • Maritime and Folk Museum[4]
  • Penneshaw Penguin Centre[5] - Nocturnal tours of the local Little Penguin colony with experienced guides are offered.
  • The Uniting Church (formerly Methodist) built c. 1883, the first church established on Kangaroo Island.[6]

Little Penguin colony[edit]

As of June 2011, the number of Little penguins in the section of the colony which is monitored by the Penneshaw Penguin Centre appears to have declined over the prior 10 years. In 2008, the population was 216 birds.[7]

Restoration work to provide improve habitat for Little penguins near Penneshaw is ongoing. As of 2013, an 800m coastal strip between Frenchman’s Rock and Baudin Conservation Park is the focus site. Works include the removal of weeds, planting of native plants and installation of nesting boxes.[8] 

In July 1984, two dogs killed 80 penguins at the Penneshaw foreshore in a single night. The mortality event reduced the population there by almost half.[9] A dog attack at Penneshaw in March 2003 resulted in over 30 penguins being killed.[7]


Penneshaw is in the Kangaroo Island Council local government area, the South Australian House of Assembly electoral district of Finniss and the Australian House of Representatives Division of Mayo.


  1. ^ a b Australian Bureau of Statistics (25 October 2007). "Penneshaw (L) (Urban Centre/Locality)". 2006 Census QuickStats. Retrieved 17 October 2011. 
  2. ^ Adelaide University Prof Frederick William Pennefather LLM
  3. ^ Rodney Cockburn (1908) What's in a name? Nomenclature of South Australia: Fergusson Publications ISBN 0-9592519-1-X
  4. ^ "Penneshaw Maritime and Folk Museum". 
  5. ^ Penneshaw Penguin Centre - Retrieved 2014-01-07.
  6. ^ "Penneshaw Methodist Church". National Library of Australia. 
  7. ^ a b Wiebken, A. "Conservation Priorities for Little Penguin Populations in Gulf St Vincent" SARDI, South Australia (2011-06). Retrieved 2014-02-25.
  8. ^ "Penguin habitat restored at Penneshaw" The Islander, Kangaroo Island, South Australia (2013-07-18). Retrieved 2014-02-25.
  9. ^ "Dogs kill penguins" The Canberra Times, ACT, Australia (1984-07-10). Retrieved 2014-02-25.

External links[edit]