The Daily Telegraph

Flightless, not hapless


sir – I enjoyed your report (September 9) on the successful breeding programme which has led to increased numbers of New Zealand’s kakapo.

However, your descriptio­n of this large, rotund and impressive parrot as “one of the most hapless animals in the world” is somewhat harsh. True, it can no longer fly and is largely grounddwel­ling. But in a country which lacked any mammalian predators until man came along and introduced them, evolution had equipped the kakapo to fit into its own ecological niche, its green plumage camouflagi­ng it perfectly on the ground.

It’s only through the prism of our own interferen­ce that it now appears out of place.

Jon Rollinson

Balsall Common, Warwickshi­re

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