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Kakapo Competition Winners To See Chicks In Wild

Media Release 17 June 1999

Kakapo Competition Winners To See Chicks In Wild

Conservation Minister Nick Smith today announced the six winners in the competition to name this season's record-breaking additions to the kakapo population - four females and two males.

"The six winners will be off to see three of the kakapo chicks in their new home on Maud Island in the Marlborough Sounds next month. With 1788 entries received from people all around the country, the judges found it difficult to settle on just six names. As well as the trip to see kakapo, four of the winners were students and each of their schools will receive a generous $1000 donation from Comalco New Zealand, sponsors of the Kakapo Recovery Programme. The six winners also receive a one-year membership to Forest & Bird's Kiwi Conservation Club and a one-year subscription to its magazine."

The winning names are Aranga, Boomer, Ellie, Hauturu, Morehu and Trevor. Details of the winner's names, schools, towns and reasons for choosing names are below.

"If the judges had selected the winning names on the basis of popularity, we would be calling the chicks Lucky, Fluffy or Fluffybum and Bossy or Bossy Boots, or after television stars like Hercules, Xena and the Teletubbies. There were 31 entries of Lucky, 20 using Fluffy and 19 using Bossy. There were even eight entries of Barry.

"We had entries from the major centres, but also lots of entries from smaller rural towns like Temuka, Mount Cook Village, Gore, Winton and Ranfurly down south, and Opotiki and Papamoa in the North Island."

Kerry McDonald, Managing Director of Comalco New Zealand, the Kakapo Recovery Plan sponsor, said he was delighted with the enthusiastic response to the competition.

"Some schools and students saw this competition as an opportunity to learn about one of New Zealand's unique birds. We know that some teachers worked through the information about kakapo on the DOC website with their classes and read books and watched videos about kakapo. One class even invented a song about the threatened bird. Many of the entries were coloured or accompanied by bright drawings. It's wonderful to see such enthusiasm for one of New Zealand's endangered birds."

This season's chicks bring the total number of kakapo left in the world to 62, with only 26 females among them - a huge improvement on the 1996 total of 50 birds.

Winning entries were chosen by a panel of judges representing the Kakapo Recovery Programme partners, Comalco New Zealand, Forest & Bird, and DOC, and local iwi, Ngai Tahu and Ngatiwai. Some of the winning names chosen were entered by more than one person. In these cases, the judges chose the entry with the best reason given for choosing the name.

Winning entries:
|-------------------------------------------+-------------+---------->
| | | |
| Choice and reason | Entrant | School |
| | | |
|-------------------------------------------+-------------+---------->
>--------------|
| |
| Town |
| |
>--------------|
|-------------------------------------------+-------------+---------->
| | | |
| Ellie - Ellie is my little sister and she | Sarah | Karamea |
| was born early and we had to fight to | Jones, 9 | Area |
| keep her alive just like we have to fight | | School |
| hard to keep the kakapo from dying out. | | |
| For Lisa's second chick (female) | | |
| | | |
|-------------------------------------------+-------------+---------->
>--------------|
| |
| Karamea, via |
| Westport |
| |
>--------------|
|-------------------------------------------+-------------+---------->
| | | |
| Morehu - Means name for a survivor, after | Kate | Columba |
| all it's the year of survival for the | Hutchison, | College |
| kakapo as they had six chicks. | 11 | |
| For Sandra's first chick (male) | | |
| | | |
|-------------------------------------------+-------------+---------->
>--------------|
| |
| Dunedin |
| |
>--------------|
|-------------------------------------------+-------------+---------->
| | | |
| Trevor Green's delight - Trevor was going | Rebecca | St |
| to help move the kakapo in his helicopter | Stevens, 7 | Thomas's |
| but he died in a plane crash. | | |
| For Zephyr's first chick (male) | | |
| | | |
|-------------------------------------------+-------------+---------->
>--------------|
| |
| Winton |
| |
>--------------|
|-------------------------------------------+-------------+---------->
| | | |
| Boomer - Baby boomer to increase the | Anita | |
| population. My father, William G Grave, | Crozier, 81 | |
| a noted climber and explore of Hollyford, | | |
| Milford etc (1898-1925), wrote this in | | |
| 1904-5 exploring the Worsley to | | |
| Sutherland Sound - "Night after night we | | |
| heard the kakapo booming, not even by day | | |
| did they cease". I am sure W G Grave | | |
| would have called the chick Boomer. | | |
| For Zephyr's second chick (female) | | |
| | | |
|-------------------------------------------+-------------+---------->
>--------------|
| |
| Oamaru |
| |
>--------------|
|-------------------------------------------+-------------+---------->
| | | |
| Aranga - Means resurrection. We are | Sandy | |
| close to knowing the kakapo is | Whitticase, | |
| recovering. | 74 | |
| For Lisa's third chick (female) | | |
| | | |
|-------------------------------------------+-------------+---------->
>--------------|
| |
| Timaru |
| |
>--------------|
|-------------------------------------------+-------------+---------->
| | | |
| Hauturu - Because some of these kakapo | Anna | Verdon |
| chick eggs were discovered on Little | McEwan, 13 | College |
| Barrier Island (Hauturu). | | |
| For Lisa's first chick (female) | | |
| | | |
|-------------------------------------------+-------------+---------->
>--------------|
| |
| Wallacetown |
| Southland |
| |
>--------------|


For more information about kakapo, check out DOC's website at
"www.doc.govt.nz/cons/native/kakapo.htm".

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