Meet the Kākāpō

What is a kākāpō?

Nothing can prepare you for a meeting with a kākāpō. They are, without doubt, one of the most remarkable birds in the world.

One of the most notable features of the kākāpō, is its distinctive, musty odour. And then there’s the way it looks and behaves…
– It’s a parrot that looks like an owl, or a giant budgieKuia

– It cannot fly, although it has large wings

– It walks and jumps and is an excellent climber

– It is nocturnal and can be found feeding on the ground or 20m up a rimu tree

– It “skraarks” loudly like other parrots but you might mistake other calls for a braying donkey, a grunting or squealing pig, a booming bittern; and it also produces a nasal metallic noise called “chinging”.

-It’s the heaviest parrot in the world

– It’s possibly the longest-lived bird species in the world; the low adult mortality rate suggests a mean life expectancy of 90 years

– It’s the only parrot that has a ‘lek’ breeding system

More facts about the kākāpō


Kākāpō Tableau data visualisation



Getting around


Life cycle



to help save kakapo

all proceeds go directly to kakapo recovery

Donate Now

Also in this section