A serious health crisis has hit the remaining Kākāpō of the world.
Aspergillosos, a life threatening respiratory disease poses an immediate danger to the endangered species.
Having already claimed the lives of seven Kākāpō s, the population of the critically endangered species is at risk. In total there are only 142 adults and 72 chicks remaining of the flightless parrots native to New Zealand.
It’s uncertain what caused the outbreak, but early symptoms include fever, chest pain and difficulty breathing. The only way to properly diagnose the illness is through CT scans over in mainland New Zealand.
Currently the Kākāpōs call Whenua hou (Codfish Island) their home making the process of diagnosis and treatment lengthy and costly.
The Kākāpō Recovery Programme is working extremely hard to take care of all the animals.
Key members include Dr Andrew Digby and Allison Balance who have also been keeping the public up to date with regular tweets. So far we know that:
- Anchor Island is clear od disease
- Seventeen birds are currently undergoing treatment
- Scans and checks are continuing to give the all-clear to others suspected to have the disease
To continue life-saving treatment the Kākāpō Recovery Programme are in urgent need of support at this crucial time.
You can donate to the Aspergillosis fund directly on their website: https://www.doc.govt.nz/kakapo-donate
2019 started out positively with many new chicks hatched and with on-going funds we can help this growth continue.