New Zealand's Natural Cover Kakapo


In the high grasses on the slopes of the Hollyford Valley in Fiordland is one of New Zealand’s unique treasures – the Kakapo. A ground owl with limited flight the Kakapo is listed internationally as a critically endangered species. This eccentric parrot is nocturnal (Kakapo means ‘night parrot’) and thanks to its plumage’s colouring and insulating secretions can survive in the wild for decades. It has however struggled against latter day predators.

The Kakapo was nearly wiped out in the early 1900’s because although formidable looking, it appears to have little idea how to defend itself against dogs, ferrets or man. Today the number of known surviving birds is only 130, including 11 new chicks born last year.

The Kakapo Survival Programme benefits from direct contributions by Crombie Lockwood.

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