Kiwi - un­daunted by the im­pos­si­ble task

Whanganui Midweek - - HEALTH & WELLBEING - By ELLA GRANT

This week a charm­ing young tourist woman rushed into the shop, found a white dress for about a four-year old, asked for the price and handed over three coins, and ran out.

The coins turned out to be two 50c pieces and a Bri­tish pound. Well, that is only 14c short of the ask­ing price, to­day the pound is worth $1.86, but we need to find some­one who wants the coin. The­o­ret­i­cally, we could make a small profit from the Aus­tralian coins we get in, and ex­otic cur­ren­cies would prob­a­bly have sen­ti­men­tal value to some peo­ple. Maybe we should set up a dona­tion box for for­eign cur­rency, like they have at air­ports.

We do, of course, have a dona­tion box. It fea­tures a photo of a kiwi un­der a bush. One of our vol­un­teers looked af­ter her for six months while she healed up af­ter los­ing her leg in a pos­sum trap. We all know ki­wis are spe­cial, but most peo­ple never get to ex­pe­ri­ence just how spe­cial. Their plumage feels much more like fur than feath­ers and it even smells dif­fer­ent from other birds.

She was a very dis­cern­ing eater. She loved dig­ging for worms in a tray of soil put into her box. But there was no point in try­ing to add fresh worms to old soil. She knew she had al­ready been through that dirt and didn’t even look at it. Fresh soil it had to be!

She also slept on her side, curled up like a cat. It can give you quite a fright to find a bird on its side. It looks dead! But she was just sleep­ing com­fort­ably. De­spite hav­ing only one foot she jumped out of a box60cm deep and had to be hauled out from un­der the spare bed.

Like many other birds the kiwi tucks its head un­der its wing to sleep.

Or tries to. Its wing is only 4cm long and its head can’t reach that far, so all it can do is tuck its great long beak un­der its tiny wing. That’s the kiwi! Un­daunted by the im­pos­si­ble.

Shazza the kiwi.

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