The rare (and strange) parrots hatched 70 Chicks, and this is an absolute record
In an unusually long breeding season of the kakapo in New Zealand in 2019, a record number of hatched Chicks, which dramatically increased the number of parrots are threatened with extinction.
18 APR 2019 18:45
Kakapo (lat. Strigops habroptila) is a very original representative of avifauna. This parrot maintains an active night life, walks waddling, can’t fly and reminds the owl (for which it is also called owl parrot owl parrot). And he is the heaviest parrot in the world: females weigh about 1.4 kg, and males 2.2 kg. and even centenarians – are these green birds, is merging with tropical vegetation, from 60 to 90 years. No wonder people call the strange, kakapo parrots on Earth.
Kakapo are endemic to New Zealand that are in the process of evolution has forgotten how to fly – they simply had no enemies who were required to escape. So parrots grew bolder, learned to dig holes in tree roots and lived happily ever after. It was preserved enough skill to climb trees and plan with them down (from a height of about 20-30 meters). However, living near people from the Maori tribe used these birds for food, but catch as much as they needed for food, and for a long time the population of the owl parrots flourished.
I talk about the #conservation of two of the world’s rarest and most unusual birds. Come for the weird bird videos and pics; stay for the science! #kakapo #takahe #NZ pic.twitter.com/qVhrRYzMiw
— Dr Andrew Digby (@takapodigs) October 12, 2018
Later, however, the habitat of the birds began to destroy the growing need for human crops, and the Europeans brought to the Islands cats and other small predators, who began to hunt the parrots who have forgotten how to fly. For nearly a century, the kakapo was on the brink of extinction: by 1977, there were only 18 males and females ornithologists never found. Scientists were ready to recognize the species doomed to extinction, but then a miracle happened – for the first time in 60 years was discovered female kakapo among hiding in the dense forests of the new population.
Usually, kakapo breed every 4-6 years and only when tree, which Maori call to Rome (actually it’s called dacrydium cypress), begins to bear fruit – as kakapo are very fond of its fruit. By the beginning of this year, the programme for the restoration and conservation of this species consisted of 147 adult birds living on island nature reserves in New Zealand. And then came a surprisingly long mating season – the first chick hatched at the end of January! Soon different pairs kakapo hatched another 69 cubs, what experts call absolute record in the history of the program for the conservation of these rare birds.
Of course, the watchers don’t expect will survive all the Chicks one of them, but they expect that most of the young kakapo live to adulthood. Now they will gradually begin to learn from parents – and with the help of program staff – skills like climbing trees and harmless for yourself planning them down.