23 May 2014
Two-and-a-half month old Kākāpō chicks Lisa1, Rakuira2 and Heather1 drew crowds like “rockstars” at the Kākāpō Chicks Day Out in Arrowtown today.
In a first for the region Real Journeys and the Department of Conservation’s Kākāpō Recovery Team brought the three precious chicks in from Invercargill for a one off public viewing.
Real Journeys Chief Executive Richard Lauder said the chicks were received like “rockstars” by the community.
“There has been an incredible public turnout, despite the poor weather we’ve had people lining up down the street," says Lauder.
“But undoubtedly the best part has been the huge smiles and the fascinated school kids after they have been in the viewing room. It’s been a very special day for all involved, including our staff.”
Through the gold coin donation entry system over $1,700 was raised for the Kākāpō Recovery Programme – with many people making more generous donations. The Kākāpō Adoption Programme was also in full swing with over $2,000 raised.
One Glenorchy School girl, Sian Davis (12), worked selling plums and possum key rings to save $200 to make two Kākāpō adoptions - Lisa1 and Rangi.
Head of the Department of Conservation Kākāpō Recovery Team Deidre Vercoe Scott says the chicks traveled very well from Invercargill and have been quite busy in their enclosure.
“They have really taken everything in their stride and gone about their business of feeding, climbing and interacting which has been fantastic for everyone to see,” says Deidre.
“The Kākāpō Recovery Team are really pleased with how the day has gone. We managed to generate some great support for the programme but more importantly allow people a once in a lifetime opportunity to see the chicks.”
Kākāpō Recovery is a partnership between Department of Conservation, New Zealand Aluminium Smelters and Forest & Bird that was formed in 1990. Kakapo Recovery is DOC’s longest running partnership and since the programme’s inception the Kākāpō population has increased from 49 to 128.
For further information contact:
Lenska Papich - Real Journeys Corporate Communications Manager
Mobile: +64 21 523 899