They are the heaviest parrot in the world, the only ones who cannot fly and they have been pulled back from the brink of extinction! New Zealand's emerald green, nocturnal, critically endangered Kakapo parrots are increasing in numbers thanks to years of conservation efforts. With an average life expectancy of 90 years you would think there would be large population but their fertility rates could not keep up with introduced predators and habitat loss.
With the work of scientists and dedicated volunteers from the New Zealand Department of Conservation the birds are increasing. Creating DNA profiles to prevent inbreeding, daily monitoring and feeding of chicks, radio transmitter monitoring of individuals and supplying supplementary nutrition has paid off. Since the birds breed infrequently an artificial insemination program has been established as well. In 1995 only 51 animals were alive. Currently, there are 208 Kakapo, a record-breaking number since the conservation work began over two decades ago.