The Kea is a mountain parrot. It’s a New Zealand native bird. Sometimes it’s called a clown bird. The Kea is related to the forest kaka.

The Kea’s back and wings are green, its nostrils are grey and its beak is black. Their green feathers are edged with black. Under its wings it’s orange. Kea grow up to 50cm long.

Between 1,000 and 5,000 kea live in the wild. They live in the mountains, on the western side of the Southern Alps, Kaikoura ranges and Tararua ranges of the North Island. It might also be seen on river flats.

Kea eat food scraps, dead meat, snow berries, leaves, buds, fruits, seeds and grubs. Kea build their nests under logs. In July to January they lay two to four white eggs. Kea fly high when traveling far.

Kea are one of the most intelligent birds in the world: it is our funny, naughty native parrot.

Illustrated and written by KauRam

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