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Flightless Parrot Back From the Brink (55) More files...
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.
Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus), Codfish Island, New Zealand  -  Stephen Belcher
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00482747 Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus), Codfish Island, New Zealand© Stephen Belcher
Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus), Codfish Island, New Zealand  -  Stephen Belcher
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00482745 Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus), Codfish Island, New Zealand© Stephen Belcher
Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) male in forest, Codfish Island, Southland, New Zealand  -  Tui De Roy
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00544487 Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) male in forest, Codfish Island, Southland, New Zealand© Tui De Roy
Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) chick being weighed by researcher, Codfish Island, New Zealand  -  Stephen Belcher
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70043620 Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) chick being weighed by researcher, Codfish Island, New Zealand© Stephen Belcher
Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) chick and researcher, Codfish Island, New Zealand  -  Stephen Belcher
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70043837 Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) chick and researcher, Codfish Island, New Zealand© Stephen Belcher
Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) chick about to be weighed, Codfish Island, New Zealand  -  Stephen Belcher
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00482763 Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) chick about to be weighed, Codfish Island, New Zealand© Stephen Belcher
Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) chick being weighed by researcher, Codfish Island, New Zealand  -  Stephen Belcher
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70043625 Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) chick being weighed by researcher, Codfish Island, New Zealand© Stephen Belcher
Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) chick held by researcher about to be weighed, Codfish Island, New Zealand  -  Stephen Belcher
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00482754 Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) chick held by researcher about to be weighed, Codfish Island, New Zealand© Stephen Belcher
Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) chick at nest with volunteer and infrared camera, Codfish Island, New Zealand  -  Stephen Belcher
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70043602 Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) chick at nest with volunteer and infrared camera, Codfish Island, New Zealand© Stephen Belcher
Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) chick fed by researcher, Codfish Island, New Zealand  -  Stephen Belcher
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00482761 Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) chick fed by researcher, Codfish Island, New Zealand© Stephen Belcher
Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) chick after feeding, Codfish Island, New Zealand  -  Stephen Belcher
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00482762 Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) chick after feeding, Codfish Island, New Zealand© Stephen Belcher
Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) chick being held by researcher, Codfish Island, New Zealand  -  Stephen Belcher
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70043936 Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) chick being held by researcher, Codfish Island, New Zealand© Stephen Belcher
Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) with radio transmitter attached, Codfish Island, New Zealand  -  Stephen Belcher
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70043834 Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) with radio transmitter attached, Codfish Island, New Zealand© Stephen Belcher
Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) researchers fitting radio transmitter to bird, Codfish Island, New Zealand  -  Stephen Belcher
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00482764 Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) researchers fitting radio transmitter to bird, Codfish Island, New Zealand© Stephen Belcher
Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) being fitted with radio transmitter, Codfish Island, New Zealand  -  Stephen Belcher
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70043835 Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) being fitted with radio transmitter, Codfish Island, New Zealand© Stephen Belcher
Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) having blood taken by researchers, Codfish Island, New Zealand  -  Stephen Belcher
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00482749 Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) having blood taken by researchers, Codfish Island, New Zealand© Stephen Belcher
Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) being inspected by researchers, Codfish Island, New Zealand  -  Stephen Belcher
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70043831 Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) being inspected by researchers, Codfish Island, New Zealand© Stephen Belcher
Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) being inspected by researchers, Codfish Island, New Zealand  -  Stephen Belcher
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70043830 Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) being inspected by researchers, Codfish Island, New Zealand© Stephen Belcher
Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) having blood taken by researchers, Codfish Island, New Zealand  -  Stephen Belcher
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00482750 Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) having blood taken by researchers, Codfish Island, New Zealand© Stephen Belcher
Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) biologist Dierdre Vercoe tracking indiviudal, Codfish Island, Southland, New Zealand  -  Tui De Roy
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00544499 Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) biologist Dierdre Vercoe tracking indiviudal, Codfish Island, Southland, New Zealand© Tui De Roy
Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) researchers tracking bird with radio telemetry, Codfish Island, New Zealand  -  Stephen Belcher
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00482771 Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) researchers tracking bird with radio telemetry, Codfish Island, New Zealand© Stephen Belcher
Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) nest entrance opened by researcher, Codfish Island, New Zealand  -  Stephen Belcher
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00482774 Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) nest entrance opened by researcher, Codfish Island, New Zealand© Stephen Belcher
Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) pair of chicks in artificial nest, Codfish Island, New Zealand  -  Stephen Belcher
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70043927 Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) pair of chicks in artificial nest, Codfish Island, New Zealand© Stephen Belcher
Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) nest with eggs, Codfish Island, Southland, New Zealand  -  Tui De Roy
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00544485 Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) nest with eggs, Codfish Island, Southland, New Zealand© Tui De Roy
Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) biologists candling egg to check on development of the embryo, Codfish Island, Southland, New Zealand  -  Tui De Roy
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00544491 Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) biologists candling egg to check on development of the embryo, Codfish Island, Southland, New Zealand© Tui De Roy
Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) biologists candling egg to check on development of the embryo, Codfish Island, Southland, New Zealand  -  Tui De Roy
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00544492 Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) biologists candling egg to check on development of the embryo, Codfish Island, Southland, New Zealand© Tui De Roy
Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) biologists candling egg to check on development of the embryo, Codfish Island, Southland, New Zealand  -  Tui De Roy
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00544493 Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) biologists candling egg to check on development of the embryo, Codfish Island, Southland, New Zealand© Tui De Roy
Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) eating from supplementary food feeder which is activated to open by the bird's tracking device, Codfish Island, New Zealand  -  Stephen Belcher
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00482759 Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) eating from supplementary food feeder which is activated to open by the bird's tracking device, Codfish Island, New Zealand© Stephen Belcher
Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) biologists tracking male bird to collect semen for artificial insemination, Codfish Island, Southland, New Zealand  -  Tui De Roy
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00544496 Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) biologists tracking male bird to collect semen for artificial insemination, Codfish Island, Southland, New Zealand© Tui De Roy
Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) biologists collecting semen from captured male bird for artificial insemination, Codfish Island, Southland, New Zealand  -  Tui De Roy
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00544495 Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) biologists collecting semen from captured male bird for artificial insemination, Codfish Island, Southland, New Zealand© Tui De Roy
Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) biologist with captured male bird to collect semen for artificial insemination, Codfish Island, Southland, New Zealand  -  Tui De Roy
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00544497 Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) biologist with captured male bird to collect semen for artificial insemination, Codfish Island, Southland, New Zealand© Tui De Roy
Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) biologist checking bird semen for artificial insemination, Codfish Island, Southland, New Zealand  -  Tui De Roy
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00544498 Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) biologist checking bird semen for artificial insemination, Codfish Island, Southland, New Zealand© Tui De Roy
Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) being released by researcher, Codfish Island, New Zealand  -  Stephen Belcher
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70043585 Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) being released by researcher, Codfish Island, New Zealand© Stephen Belcher
Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) biologist checking bird semen for artificial insemination, Codfish Island, Southland, New Zealand  -  Tui De Roy
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00544500 Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) biologist checking bird semen for artificial insemination, Codfish Island, Southland, New Zealand© Tui De Roy
Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) biologist climbing tree to count unripe seeds which will be an indicator whether the kakapo will breed this year, Codfish Island, Southland, New Zealand  -  Tui De Roy
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00544494 Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) biologist climbing tree to count unripe seeds which will be an indicator whether the kakapo will breed this year, Codfish Island, Southland, New Zealand© Tui De Roy
Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) biologist carrying incubator for breeding program, Codfish Island, Southland, New Zealand  -  Tui De Roy
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00544501 Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) biologist carrying incubator for breeding program, Codfish Island, Southland, New Zealand© Tui De Roy
Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) researcher reviewing genetic sequence, Dunedin, Otago, New Zealand  -  Stephen Belcher
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00482772 Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) researcher reviewing genetic sequence, Dunedin, Otago, New Zealand© Stephen Belcher
Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) researcher reviewing infrared video on laptop, Codfish Island, New Zealand  -  Stephen Belcher
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00482756 Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) researcher reviewing infrared video on laptop, Codfish Island, New Zealand© Stephen Belcher
Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) in defensive posture at night, Codfish Island, New Zealand  -  Stephen Belcher
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00482765 Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) in defensive posture at night, Codfish Island, New Zealand© Stephen Belcher
Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus), Codfish Island, New Zealand  -  Stephen Belcher
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70043574 Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus), Codfish Island, New Zealand© Stephen Belcher
Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus), Codfish Island, New Zealand  -  Stephen Belcher
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70043656 Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus), Codfish Island, New Zealand© Stephen Belcher
Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) at night, Codfish Island, New Zealand  -  Stephen Belcher
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00482746 Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) at night, Codfish Island, New Zealand© Stephen Belcher
Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) in tree, Codfish Island, New Zealand  -  Stephen Belcher
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70043567 Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) in tree, Codfish Island, New Zealand© Stephen Belcher
Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) flightless nocturnal parrot, hand-reared, pressing juice from fibrous grass, Codfish Island, Whenua Hoa, New Zealand  -  Tui De Roy
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00143527 Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) flightless nocturnal parrot, hand-reared, pressing juice from fibrous grass, Codfish Island, Whenua Hoa, New Zealand© Tui De Roy
Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) flightless nocturnal parrot, hand-reared, feeding on Astelia berries, Codfish Island, Whenua Hoa, New Zealand  -  Tui De Roy
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00143526 Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) flightless nocturnal parrot, hand-reared, feeding on Astelia berries, Codfish Island, Whenua Hoa, New Zealand© Tui De Roy
Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus), Codfish Island, New Zealand  -  Stephen Belcher
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70043598 Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus), Codfish Island, New Zealand© Stephen Belcher
cKakapo (Strigops habroptilus) male in forest, Codfish Island, Southland, New Zealand  -  Tui De Roy
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00544490 cKakapo (Strigops habroptilus) male in forest, Codfish Island, Southland, New Zealand© Tui De Roy
Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) male, Codfish Island, Southland, New Zealand  -  Tui De Roy
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00544489 Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) male, Codfish Island, Southland, New Zealand© Tui De Roy
Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) flightless nocturnal parrot, hand-reared, scrambling through scrub in search of berries, Codfish Island, Whenua Hoa, New Zealand  -  Tui De Roy
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00143533 Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) flightless nocturnal parrot, hand-reared, scrambling through scrub in search of berries, Codfish Island, Whenua Hoa, New Zealand© Tui De Roy
Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) flightless nocturnal parrot, hand-reared, playful young pair, Codfish Island, Whenua Hoa, New Zealand  -  Tui De Roy
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00143528 Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) flightless nocturnal parrot, hand-reared, playful young pair, Codfish Island, Whenua Hoa, New Zealand© Tui De Roy
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