Skip to content

Kakapo Banned From Competing in New Zealand’s Hen of the 12 months Contest


    Voting opened simply this week to find out New Zealand’s favourite chicken for the 12 months of 2022. Amongst penguins, terns, petrels, and plenty of various kinds of parrots, one New Zealand favourite is conspicuously lacking from this 12 months’s vote.

    Associated Article: Northern Bobwhites Reintroduced in West Virginia

    The Kākāpō is a big flightless parrot with sensible inexperienced feathers and a captivating owlish face. In recent times, the chicken has change into considerably of a logo for avian conservation efforts in New Zealand and across the globe. Severely threatened by cat predation and habitat loss, the present wild inhabitants of those forest-dwelling parrots is simply over 200 birds.

    So why would a chicken as endangered because the Kakapo be disqualified from the “Hen of the 12 months” vote? It is just too well-liked. New Zealand is sometimes called the “Land of the Birds.” Sadly, although, an incredible lots of New Zealand’s birds are endangered to some extent, with many species being critically endangered and dealing with the very actual risk of extinction.

    The Kakapo is, in fact, one of many birds for whom extinction is a really actual risk. And but, in contrast to so many different New Zealand birds, the Kakapo is the topic of intense reputation and focus. From cute and charismatic moments in nature documentaries to monumental conservation efforts, the Kakapo is definitely receiving the attention and efforts of the general public. Whether or not it can all be sufficient to tug this chicken again from the brink is inconceivable to say.

    That is precisely the rationale that the Kakapo is barred from the competitors for New Zealand’s 2022 Hen of the 12 months. With the Kakapo having already received the competition twice in 2008 and 2020, conservation group Forest & Hen is urging voters to permit a brand new endangered “underbird” an opportunity to shine. The competitors this 12 months highlights a number of “hidden gems” of New Zealand, species which are sometimes missed or not talked about when conservation is mentioned. Barring the Kakapo from this 12 months’s proceedings furthers the chance that an “underbird” may take the crown and unfold a bit of little bit of consciousness to its distinctive conservation plight. Birds just like the Reef Heron, Wrybill, and Black Stilt have a significantly better probability of receiving a lot wanted help if consciousness is unfold past the extra well-liked decisions.

    Wrybill, Anarhynchus frontalis, New Zealand, December 2010
    “Underbird” Wrybill, Anarhynchus frontalis, New Zealand, December 2010. Picture by Renke Lühken. Provided through Wikimedia Commons underneath Inventive Commons 2.0

    In fact, the Kakapo has not been completely banned from the competitors. In future years, the Kakapo could also be allowed to enter the vote as soon as once more. Highlighting the plights of much less well-liked birds is vital, however in the end the Kakapo stays some of the critically endangered birds round. The truth that it’s so well-liked with voters is a really sturdy signal that curiosity on this chicken will proceed and gas conservation efforts all through the troublesome highway forward.

    Widespread Article: Gannet Symbolism & That means (+Totem, Spirit & Omens)