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The Kakapo

The Kakapo (Maori for 'night parrot'), the emblem for this publisher, is the world's only flightless parrot and is native to just New Zealand. Weighing up to 3.5 kilograms (8 lbs) the kakapo is also the world's heaviest parrot. This largely nocturnal bird has been on the verge of extinction for nearly two hundred years and today only 125 kakapo exist. As a flightless bird it has been threatened most by mammals and with the arrival of man, who introduced rats (kiore) and dogs (kuri) to New Zealand, its numbers dramatically declined. The conservation programme for the birds, that has become the Kakapo Recovery Plan, has seen the relocation of the kakapo to just two islands - Codfish (Whenua Hou) and Anchor Island (Pukenui). The kakapo requires a large habitat area for its home-range and on the islands the birds are under protection with Department of Conservation staff making vast efforts to breed chicks in captivity and keep the kakapo free from predators.