Kākāpo, a flightless nocturnal bird and the world’ fattest parrot, has been named New Zealand’s bird of the year.
The parrot, which used to live throughout Aotearoa but is now only found on New Zealand’s predator-free islands, has been voted in this Bird of the Year, winning over several other bird candidates.
“In a stunning upset the kakapo swoops in from behind to claw the title of #BirdOfTheYear 2020 away from competition front-runner,” announced Forest & Bird on Monday.
107 different countries including the United States, Australia and Britain joined with a record of 55,583 votes cast for the poll. The election was wodely popular that it even included a scandal of fraud, where about 1,500 ballots were deemed ineligible by officials.
But the election wasn’t without scandal, including claims of voter fraud, after some 1,500 ballots for the little spotted bird were deemed ineligible by officials after the votes were found to be cast using fake email addresses that were traced back to the same IP address.
The Antipodean Albatross was leading the whole two-week voting period and topped the leaderboard with the most number of votes, but the supporters of kakapo swooped in the last minute and took over.