Eric, once alpha male of the Slangkop troop, will always have a very special place in the hearts of many Kommetjie residents.
Probably the most famous story about Eric, which became the subject of a delightful children’s book called Eric in “It’s a Piece of Cake”, relates an incident in which he was injured and taken to the local vet to be treated.
Some background: Eric was a regular and stealthy visitor to a local restaurant owned by Vernon, especially on days when Vernon was baking his famous carrot cake. In spite of Eric’s mischievous and thieving ways, Vernon developed a deep love and lasting respect for him.
You can buy this book and other magical children’s books at www.africanpenguin.co.za
Many people enjoy memories of Eric visiting their properties – sitting quietly with them while they gardened, or sauntering casually through the kitchen and helping himself to whatever was on offer, he was always the consummate gentleman.
Luckily for him, he lived in a time of more tolerance, both by residents and the authorities.
Eric died at 24 years old, of natural causes. With the current protocol which allows for the removal of “problem” animals, especially males, it is unlikely there will ever be another male who reaches that ripe old age in Cape Town.