A two bird race

By David Winter 07/10/2010 6


You are running out of time to cast the most important you will have this year – who will run your community be voted Bird of the Year for 2010? This year I stepped up an offered my services as campaign manager for the the bellbird, and frankly i’ve done a terrible job. With nearly 9 000 votes cast the korimako has 51, or about 0.05% of the electorate’s support. I’m sure this at least parially because Forest and Bird didn’t include my completely unoriginal campaign logo in their post:

There, that got to be worth a vote or two right? I think it’s all a bit late for the bellbird this year, because the poll has already become a two bird race. These are the standings scraped from the Forest and Bird site last night:

You can click to embiggen this graph, or click here to see a slightly different one

So it’s a head to head battle between the Pukeko; a multinational entity which shills for one of the country’s worst polluters, and the Kākāriki; a bird whose very name means green. Obviously, the bellbrid campaign still values and wants your vote, but if you can’t make the korimako your bird of year, then we urge you think green!


6 Responses to “A two bird race”

  • I hear you!

    As the campaign manager for the most excellent little blue penguin, I’ve watched in despair as the long-legged pukeko raced through the polls, leaving my little blues waddling along sedately in the dust the ‘kekos left behind.

    The bellbird is well worthy.
    But how about the year that the grey warbler took top bird?
    Quite a coup for such a discrete little bird,
    Steph

  • If people like their big blue birdies, maybe they should vote for the Takahe, which really needs some exposure. Only 230 odd adults left, and pretty special, and yet crazily, many New Zealanders have never heard of them!

  • Well indeed Serra,

    Perhaps this isn’t the week to be dredging up anti-immigrant sentiment, but whereas the pukeko is a recent arrival and hardly different than this species across the rest of the world, the takahe is a uniquely New Zealand version of the swamp hen.

    Modern takahe descend from a pukeko-like ancestor that invaded the South Island millions of years ago, and, isolated here got pleasently plump and gave up on flying. It seems the (now extinct) North Island takahe was the result of another such invasion while the pukeko is the latest wave. An of course, the takahe has the Lazurus factor going for it!