Call of the Kea
‘Kea’ is derived from the ancient Maori name for these alpine parrots, and – like many Maori words – does not end in an ‘s’ when plural. It is thought to be a reference to the birds’ distinctive ‘kee-ah’ calls (which you can listen to at xeno-canto. org). However, these sociable birds also have a wide repertoire of other vocalisations, including squeals and whinnies, as well as communicating by body language and even feather posturing and displays.
Kaka ( left) means parrot and riki ( right) means little.