The number of kakapos in the world has risen by a third
May 6, 2002 11:06 AM   Subscribe

The number of kakapos in the world has risen by a third recently thanks to a 'bumper brood of chicks'. The kakapo, the worlds rarest parrot, was made famous by Douglas Adams' book Last Chance to See and is probably best known for its extravagent mating system. It is nice to see an endangered species doing better, especially one as cute and odd as this one is.
posted by homunculus (13 comments total)
They are really cute. The chick is lavender - wow. So pretty. I wonder if there's an audio file anywhere of the kakapo mating boom - I'm really curious to hear what that sounds like. This is a great post, homunculus - very nicely put together.
posted by iconomy at 11:33 AM on May 6, 2002

One of my favorite books, and my favorite chapter in said book. Great to hear the kakapo will boom more in the future.
posted by me3dia at 11:40 AM on May 6, 2002

There's a recording of the boom here.

(My firm hosts the site).
posted by i_am_joe's_spleen at 12:22 PM on May 6, 2002

Definitely good news, in a world presently filled with treachery, lies, and war. At least in the headlines. Would only that there be more good news like this.
posted by ZachsMind at 12:41 PM on May 6, 2002

Has anyone tried synchronizing that recording with the Wizard of Oz?
posted by MrMoonPie at 12:48 PM on May 6, 2002

This is a great post, homunculus - very nicely put together.

posted by homunculus at 1:00 PM on May 6, 2002

This bird seems destined for extinction in a way (not saying I want that to happen though). Its mating habits, slow breading, lack of flight all seem to work to its disadvantage. Rather interesting that it evolved this way at all. Nature is indeed surprising.
posted by madmanz123 at 1:17 PM on May 6, 2002

madmanz123, New Zealand before any settlement by humans had very few predators [the Hasst eagle being the most impressive], with no native mammals [expect a small bat] and very few predators [no rats, stots, cats, dogs], a large number of species, [kiwi, moa, weka, etc] all became flightless and with a slow breeding cycle.

Because of Human settlement and introduction of predatory mammals, almost all of New Zealand's birds are endangered.
posted by X-00 at 2:33 PM on May 6, 2002

X-00 - what a shock that link gave me. On my bedroom wall as a kid there was a poster with that exact image of the Haast eagle.

Nonetheless, the text in that page is craaaaaap. Here is a much better one. This same site includes the eternal lyric:

No moa, no moa
In old Ao-tea-roa.
Can't get 'em.
They've et 'em;
They've gone and there aint no moa!

posted by i_am_joe's_spleen at 2:46 PM on May 6, 2002

Heh. A Booming, flightless, nocturnal parrot, which spends most of its time maintaining perfect little pathways through the bush...
Yeah, right, whatever.

But seriously, thank god those haast eagles are extinct! I can just see them swooping down on Customhouse Quay at half-past-five, picking off choice grey-suited morsels and carrying them off to their nests on the Majestic Centre.
posted by Catch at 5:11 PM on May 6, 2002

I can't see how thats a bad thing Catch, we could weed out the crap managers by weighting them down with paper work.
posted by X-00 at 5:48 PM on May 6, 2002

I suppose it could be manipulated into part of the whole "adventure tourism" thang.
posted by Catch at 6:11 PM on May 6, 2002

Thanks for the audio, i_am_joe's_spleen. It sounds like a tuba.
posted by iconomy at 6:27 PM on May 6, 2002

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