Forest

Habitats

Forest

  • 1.1. Boreal
  • 1.2. Subarctic
  • 1.3. Subantarctic
  • 1.4. Temperate
  • 1.5. Subtropical/tropical dry
  • 1.6. Subtropical/tropical moist lowland
  • 1.7. Subtropical/tropical mangrove vegetation above high tide level
  • 1.8. Subtropical/tropical swamp
  • 1.9. Subtropical/tropical moist montane

 

Forest Animals

North America

Continents

North America

 

North American Animals

Savanna

Habitats

Savanna

  • 2.1. Dry
  • 2.2. Moist

 

Savanna Animals

Europe

Continents

Europe

 

European Animals

Asia

Continents

Asia

 

Asian Animals

Shrubland

Habitats

Shrubland

  • 3.1. Subarctic
  • 3.2. Subantarctic
  • 3.3. Boreal
  • 3.4. Temperate
  • 3.5. Subtropical/tropical dry
  • 3.6. Subtropical/tropical moist
  • 3.7. Subtropical/tropical high altitude
  • 3.8. Mediterranean-type shrubby vegetation

 

Shrubland Animals

Grassland

Habitats

Grassland

  • 4.1. Tundra
  • 4.2. Subarctic
  • 4.3. Subantarctic
  • 4.4. Temperate
  • 4.5. Subtropical/tropical dry
  • 4.6. Subtropical/tropical seasonally wet/flooded
  • 4.7. Subtropical/tropical high altitude

 

Grassland Animals

South America

Continents

South America

 

South American Animals

Wetlands

Habitats

Wetlands (Inland)

  • 5.1. Permanent rivers/streams/creeks (includes waterfalls)
  • 5.2. Seasonal/intermittent/irregular rivers/streams/creeks
  • 5.3. Shrub dominated wetlands
  • 5.4. Bogs, marshes, swamps, fens, peatlands
  • 5.5. Permanent freshwater lakes (over 8 ha)
  • 5.6. Seasonal/intermittent freshwater lakes (over 8 ha)
  • 5.7. Permanent freshwater marshes/pools (under 8 ha)
  • 5.8. Seasonal/intermittent freshwater marshes/pools (under 8 ha)
  • 5.9. Freshwater springs and oases
  • 5.10. Tundra wetlands (inc. pools and temporary waters from snowmelt)
  • 5.11. Alpine wetlands (inc. temporary waters from snowmelt)
  • 5.12. Geothermal wetlands
  • 5.13. Permanent inland deltas
  • 5.14. Permanent saline, brackish or alkaline lakes
  • 5.15. Seasonal/intermittent saline, brackish or alkaline lakes and flats
  • 5.16. Permanent saline, brackish or alkaline marshes/pools
  • 5.17. Seasonal/intermittent saline, brackish or alkaline marshes/pools
  • 5.18. Karst and other subterranean hydrological systems (inland)

 

Wetland Animals

Africa

Continents

Africa

 

African Animals

Rocky

Habitats

Rocky

  • Inland Cliffs
  • Mountain Peaks

 

Rocky Area Animals

Australia

Continents

Australia

 

Australian Animals

Antarctica

Continents

Antarctica

 

Antarctic Animals

Caves & Subterranean

Habitats

Caves & Subterranean (Non-Aquatic)

  • 7.1. Caves
  • 7.2. Other subterranean habitats

 

Caves & Subterranean Animals

Desert

Habitats

Desert

  • 8.1. Hot
  • 8.2. Temperate
  • 8.3. Cold

 

Desert Animals

Marine Neritic

Habitats

Marine Neritic

  • 9.1. Pelagic
  • 9.2. Subtidal rock and rocky reefs
  • 9.3. Subtidal loose rock/pebble/gravel
  • 9.4. Subtidal sandy
  • 9.5. Subtidal sandy-mud
  • 9.6. Subtidal muddy
  • 9.7. Macroalgal/kelp
  • 9.8. Coral Reef
    • 9.8.1. Outer reef channel
    • 9.8.2. Back slope
    • 9.8.3. Foreslope (outer reef slope)
    • 9.8.4. Lagoon
    • 9.8.5. Inter-reef soft substrate
    • 9.8.6. Inter-reef rubble substrate
  • 9.9 Seagrass (Submerged)
  • 9.10 Estuaries

 

Marine Neritic Animals

Marine Oceanic

Habitats

Marine Oceanic

  • 10.1 Epipelagic (0–200 m)
  • 10.2 Mesopelagic (200–1,000 m)
  • 10.3 Bathypelagic (1,000–4,000 m)
  • 10.4 Abyssopelagic (4,000–6,000 m)

 

Marine Oceanic Animals

Marine Deep Ocean Floor

Habitats

Marine Deep Ocean Floor (Benthic and Demersal)

  • 11.1 Continental Slope/Bathyl Zone (200–4,000 m)
    • 11.1.1 Hard Substrate
    • 11.1.2 Soft Substrate
  • 11.2 Abyssal Plain (4,000–6,000 m)
  • 11.3 Abyssal Mountain/Hills (4,000–6,000 m)
  • 11.4 Hadal/Deep Sea Trench (>6,000 m)
  • 11.5 Seamount
  • 11.6 Deep Sea Vents (Rifts/Seeps)

 

Marine Deep Ocean Floor Animals

Marine Intertidal

Habitats

Marine Intertidal

  • 12.1 Rocky Shoreline
  • 12.2 Sandy Shoreline and/or Beaches, Sand Bars, Spits, etc.
  • 12.3 Shingle and/or Pebble Shoreline and/or Beaches
  • 12.4 Mud Shoreline and Intertidal Mud Flats
  • 12.5 Salt Marshes (Emergent Grasses)
  • 12.6 Tidepools
  • 12.7 Mangrove Submerged Roots

 

Marine Intertidal Animals

Marine Coastal/Supratidal

Habitats

Marine Coastal/Supratidal

  • 13.1 Sea Cliffs and Rocky Offshore Islands
  • 13.2 Coastal Caves/Karst
  • 13.3 Coastal Sand Dunes
  • 13.4 Coastal Brackish/Saline Lagoons/Marine Lakes
  • 13.5 Coastal Freshwater Lakes

 

Marine Coastal/Supratidal Animals

Artificial Terrestrial

Habitats

Artificial – Terrestrial

  • 14.1 Arable Land
  • 14.2 Pastureland
  • 14.3 Plantations
  • 14.4 Rural Gardens
  • 14.5 Urban Areas
  • 14.6 Subtropical/Tropical Heavily Degraded Former Forest

 

Artificial Terrestrial Animals

Artificial Aquatic

Habitats

Artificial – Aquatic

  • 15.1 Water Storage Areas [over 8 ha]
  • 15.2 Ponds [below 8 ha]
  • 15.3 Aquaculture Ponds
  • 15.4 Salt Exploitation Sites
  • 15.5 Excavations (open)
  • 15.6 Wastewater Treatment Areas
  • 15.7 Irrigated Land [includes irrigation channels]
  • 15.8 Seasonally Flooded Agricultural Land
  • 15.9 Canals and Drainage Channels, Ditches
  • 15.10 Karst and Other Subterranean Hydrological Systems [human-made]
  • 15.11 Marine Anthropogenic Structures
  • 15.12 Mariculture Cages
  • 15.13 Mari/Brackish-culture Pond

 

Artificial Aquatic

Introduced Vegetation

Habitats

Introduced Vegetation

 

Introduced Vegetation Animals

Other

Other

 

Other Habitat Animals

Unknown

Unknown

 

Unknown Habitat Animals

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Kea

Kea

As opportunistic, generalist omnivorous foragers, kea are primary, secondary, and higher-level consumers and only compete with the kaka for food resources.

Kea, being opportunistic, generalist omnivorous foragers, are primary, secondary, and higher-level consumers.

In the past, kea probably had an array of competitors, such as New Zealand kaka (Nestor meridionalis), moa (Anomalopteryx, Dinornis, Emeus, Euryapteryx, Megalapteryx, and Pachyornis spp.), kakapo (Strigops habroptila), North Island takahe (Porphyrio mantelli), and Chatham ravens (Corvus moriorum), but human settlement fueled a mass extinction of New Zealand’s native birds. Moa, takahe, and Chatham ravens are now extinct, and kakapo are extremely rare.

Only kaka remain to compete with kea and, where their ranges overlap, these two closely related species use many of the same food resources. The kaka is a lowland species, and is smaller and darker than the kea with crimson underparts.


Image | © Barni1, Some Rights Reserved, Pixabay
Sources | (Diamond & Bond, 1999; Williams, 2001)

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Kea

Kea

After a female kea initiates copulation by inviting play or being submissive, the male will feed her a regurgitated meal before mounting.

Kea copulation is often initiated by the female, who approaches the male and invites play or adopts a submissive posture and solicits preening. The male then feeds the female a regurgitated meal and mounts her.


Image | © Barni1, Some Rights Reserved, Pixabay
Sources | (del Hoyo, Elliott, Sargatal, Christie, & de Juana, 2017; Diamond & Bond, 1999; Tebbich, Taborsky, & Winkler, 1996; Williams, 2001)

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Kea

Kea

The kea’s diet varies by season as it feeds on plants during flowering seasons and relies on trash heaps, flesh, and bone marrow in the winter when foods are scarce.

The foods kea consume vary by season.

In spring, they eat mountain daisies (Celmisia) and dig in the soil for small plants and insects.

In summer, kea consume the nectar and pollen of flowering mountain flax (Phorium colensoi) and rata (Metrosideros). They eat berries of coprosma (Coprosma) and snow totara (Podocarpus nivalis), and eat the leaves, fruit, seeds, and flowers of other plants. In summer, they also eat beetle grubs, grasshoppers, and land snails.

In fall, kea feed on mountain beech leaves and buds and continue foraging on the roots, bulbs, fruit, seeds, and stems of other plants.

Kea scavenge on trash heaps year round and relish the flesh and bone marrow from carcasses. These food sources become particularly important in winter, when plant foods are scarce.


Image | © Ildigo, Some Rights Reserved, Pixabay
Sources | (del Hoyo, Elliott, Sargatal, Christie, & de Juana, 2017; Diamond & Bond, 1999; Williams, 2001)

 

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Kea

Kea

Kea have decurved upper bills, or culmens, and females have shorter, less curved culmens.

Kea have dark brown bills, cere, iris, legs, and feet. They have decurved upper bills, or culmens.

Females have shorter, less curved culmens.


Image | ©️ James Ball, Some Rights Reserved, (CC BY 2.5)
Sources | (Bond, Wilson, & Diamond, 1991; del Hoyo, Elliott, Sargatal, Christie, & de Juana, 2017; Diamond & Bond, 1999)

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Kea

Kea

Kea have a polygynous mating system in which males fight for dominance to become part of the 10% that is allowed to breed in certain years.

Kea have a polygynous mating system. Males fight for dominance, and the hierarchy is strict. As few as 10% of males may be allowed to breed in certain years.


Image | ©️ Aftab Uzzaman, Some Rights Reserved, (CC BY-NC 2.0)
Sources | (del Hoyo, Elliott, Sargatal, Christie, & de Juana, 2017; Diamond & Bond, 1999; Tebbich, Taborsky, & Winkler, 1996; Williams, 2001)

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Kea

Kea

Kea are diurnal and call and forage in the morning, roost in the middle of the day, and forage again before sleeping in the trees.

Kea are diurnal, rising in the early morning to begin calling and then foraging until late morning. They generally roost during the middle of the day and begin foraging again in the evening, sometimes until after dark, when they go to roost for the night on tree branches.

The timing of these daily activities varies with the weather; kea are fairly heat-intolerant and spend more time roosting on hot days.


Image | ©️ Rafal Wadowski, Some Rights Reserved, (CC BY-ND 2.0)
Sources | (Diamond & Bond, 1999; Gajdon, Fijn, & Huber, 2004; Huber & Taborsky, 2001; Tebbich, Taborsky, & Winkler, 1996; Williams, 2001)

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Kea

Kea

Kea are colorful birds with bronze olive-green bodies, dull blue primaries, red-orange coverts, and a dull red lower back.

The kea has mostly dull bronze, olive-green plumage. Its underparts are brownish-green with dark-edged feathers.

The feathers on the sides of the kea’s face are dark olive-brown with dark-edged feathers. It has a grey-brown beak having a long, narrow, curved upper beak. The adult has dark-brown irises, and the cere, eyerings, legs, and feet are grey-brown.

The underwing coverts are scarlet red-orange with yellow barring and notching that extends to the undersides of the flight feathers. The feathers on its lower back and rump are dull red-orange reaching to the upper-tail coverts, and some of the outer webs of their primary feathers are dull-blue.

The kea has a short, broad, bluish-green tail with a black tip. The upper surface of the tail is bronze-green. Feather shafts project at the tip of the tail and the undersides of the inner tail feathers have dull, yellow-orange transverse stripes.

Juvenile kea generally resemble adults, but have yellow eyerings, crowns, and cere, an orange-yellow lower beak, and grey-yellow legs.


Image | ©️ Phillip Capper, Some Rights Reserved, (CC BY 2.0)
Sources | (BirdLife International, 2017; Bond, Wilson, & Forshaw, 2006; Diamond, 1991; del Hoyo, Elliott, Sargatal, Christie, & de Juana, 2017; Diamond & Bond, 1999; The Wikimedia Foundation, 2020)

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Kea

Kea

Due to a life in an extreme alpine environment, kea are encouraged to opportunistically and inquisitively explore their surroundings and will commonly investigate and destroy human belongings.

It has been proposed that life in an extreme alpine environment has encouraged kea to opportunistically and inquisitively explore their surroundings.

Increasingly, the parrots have come into contact with human habitations, sometimes foraging at refuse dumps, ski fields, and cabins.

Kea commonly investigate human belongings, and are known to destroy car accessories, such as windshield wipers and weather stripping, and ski lodge equipment. These birds have also shredded hiking boots and have stolen objects, such as sunglasses. The damage can cause serious problems, such as when the birds rip out car wiring and destroy ski-lift warning systems.

Birds are also sometimes killed through accidents with human objects, such as motor vehicles, snow groomers, rubbish bins, and electricity sub-stations.


Image | ©️ Bernard Spragg. NZ, Public Domain, (CC0 1.0)
Sources | (BirdLife International, 2017; Diamond & Bond, 1999; Gajdon, Fijn, & Huber, 2004; Huber & Taborsky, 2001; Tebbich, Taborsky, & Winkler, 1996; Orr-Walker, Kemp, Adams, & Roberts, 2015; Williams, 2001)

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Kea

Kea

Kea are opportunistic, generalist, omnivorous foraging parrots that rely on the leaves, buds, and nuts of southern beeches as an important part of their diet.

Kea are opportunistic, omnivorous parrots. The leaves, buds, and nuts of southern beeches (Nothofagus) are especially important in the kea diet.

Kea feed on plant matter, such as leaves, buds, nuts, roots, stems, fruit, seeds, flowers, nectar, pollen, and berries. They mostly feed on berries and shoots. They also feed on insects, like beetle grubs and grasshoppers. Kea have been reported to eat land snails, rabbits, and mice. Kea scavenge on trash heaps year-round and relish the flesh and bone marrow from carcasses. Kea have also gained a reputation for attacking sheep (Ovis aries), although they usually only prey on wounded or diseased sheep.


Image | ©️ Bernard Spragg. NZ, Public Domain, (CC0 1.0)
Sources | (BirdLife International, 2017; del Hoyo, Elliott, Sargatal, Christie, & de Juana, 2017; Diamond & Bond, 1999; Williams, 2001)

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Kea

Kea

Kea are alpine parrots and inhabit temperate and subtropical/tropical moist lowland forests, shrubland, grassland, and even artificial terrestrial habitats, such as pastureland and urban areas.

Kea are alpine parrots and inhabit temperate and subtropical/tropical moist lowland forests, shrubland, grassland, and even artificial terrestrial habitats, such as pastureland and urban areas.

The kea mostly inhabits high-altitude forest and alpine basins, although birds will often frequent and nest in coastal lowland flats. Kea live in wooded valleys and southern beech (Nothofagus) forests that line sub-alpine scrublands at 600 to 2,000 meters.

Its foraging habitat includes all types of native forest, sub-alpine scrub, tussock and herb-field.

In summer, kea inhabit high elevation scrub and alpine tundra areas. In autumn, they move to higher elevations to forage for berries. In winter, kea move below the timberline.

Climate change may pose a threat through possible future influences on its high altitude habitat.


Image | © MeisterBohne, Some Rights Reserved, Pixabay
Sources | (BirdLife International, 2017; del Hoyo, Elliott, Sargatal, Christie, & de Juana, 2017; Williams, 2001)

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Kea

Kea

The kea was described by ornithologist, John Gould, in 1856 and is named after its loud, in-flight “keee-aa” call.

The kea was described by ornithologist, John Gould, in 1856.

The genus Nestor contains four species: the New Zealand kaka (Nestor meridionalis), the kea (Nestor notabilis), the extinct Norfolk kaka (Nestor productus), and the extinct Chatham kaka (Nestor chathamensis). All four are thought to stem from a proto-kākā, dwelling in the forests of New Zealand five million years ago. Their closest relative is the flightless kakapo (Strigops habroptilus), though their only competitor is the closely related kaka. The kaka is a lowland species, and is smaller and darker than the kea with crimson underparts. Together, they form the parrot superfamily Strigopoidea, an ancient group that split off from all other Psittacidae before their radiation.

The kea’s specific epithet, the Latin term notabilis, means noteworthy.

The common name kea is from Māori, an onomatopoeic representation of their loud, in-flight call, keee-aa. The word kea is both singular and plural.


Image | © leli, Some Rights Reserved, Pixabay
Sources | (BirdLife International, 2017; De Kloet & De Kloet, 2005; Diamond & Bond, 1999; Gould, 1856; Juniper & Parr, 1998; The Wikimedia Foundation, 2020; Williams, 2001; Wright, et al., 2008)

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Kea

Kea

Kea are endemic to the mountains of South Island, New Zealand and range from Kahurangi to Fiordland, including the Kaikoura Ranges.

The kea is one of ten endemic parrot species in New Zealand and is native to the mountains of South Island, New Zealand.

The population is sparsely distributed across a range of approximately 3.5 million hectares from Kahurangi to Fiordland, and including the Kaikoura Ranges.

The population is a fraction of what it once was, largely due to persecution between the late 1860s and early 1970s, although pockets of high population densities persist in some areas, such as around Arthur’s Pass and South Westland.

The feasibility of a captive or island insurance population needs to be investigated.


Image | ©️ Bernard Spragg. NZ, Public Domain, (CC0 1.0)
Sources | (del Hoyo, Elliott, Sargatal, Christie, & de Juana, 2017; Orr-Walker, Kemp, Adams, & Roberts, 2015; Tebbich, Taborsky, & Winkler, 1996; The Wikimedia Foundation, 2020; Williams, 2001)

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Kea

Kea

Kea are highly social birds that live in family groups of 30-40 and exhibit a variety of social behaviors, such as intricate play.

Kea are highly intelligent, social birds. They live in family groups and aggregations of 30 to 40 birds and often forage at prime feeding grounds, such as garbage dumps, ski fields, and cabins.

Kea exhibit a variety of social behaviors, including intricate play.


Image | © M_Carted, Some Rights Reserved, Pixabay
Sources | (BirdLife International, 2017; Diamond & Bond, 1999; Gajdon, Fijn, & Huber, 2004; Huber & Taborsky, 2001; Tebbich, Taborsky, & Winkler, 1996; Williams, 2001)

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Holiday Art Trade

Happy new year, everyone! Most of us are probably excited that 2020 has ended and 2021 has begun!

FaunaFocus’ 4th annual Holiday Art Trade has been another success! This year, 20 different artists participated, helping to spread cheer throughout the season. Each artist created artwork that featured an animal species requested by another participant, secret Santa style. With a variety of media and styles, it was a pleasure to view each entry and every artist received a surprise gift in return.

Thanks to everyone who participated and created stunning work! To those who took part, enjoy your gifted art!

With the new year starting, we’re already looking forward to the 5th annual FaunaFocus Holiday Art Trade. Sign-ups will open at the beginning of November!

Kea

Kea

Kea are crow-sized parrots, about 48 cm. long, that display sexual dimorphism as males weigh 20% more and are 5% longer than females and have 12-14% longer bills.

The kea is a large, crow-sized parrot about 48 centimeters, or 19 inches, long as an adult and weighs between 800 grams (1.8 pounds) and 1 kilogram (2.2 pounds).

The male is about 5% longer than the female, and the male’s upper beak is 12–14% longer than the female’s. Kea have decurved upper bills or culmens, but females have shorter, less curved culmens and weigh about 20 percent less than males.


Image | ©️ Aidan Wojtas, Some Rights Reserved, (CC BY-SA 2.0)
Sources | (BirdLife International, 2017; Bond & Diamond, 1991; Bond, Wilson, & Diamond, 1991; del Hoyo, Elliott, Sargatal, Christie, & de Juana, 2017; Diamond & Bond, 1999; Dunning, 2007; The Wikimedia Foundation, 2020)

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Kea Trivia

Kea

Do you think you know the kea? Test your knowledge of kea FaunaFacts with this trivia quiz!

Click on an answer choice to receive instant feedback. Red answers are incorrect, but allow you to continue guessing. Green answers are correct and will provide additional explanatory information. Sometimes more than one answer is correct!

Learn More About the Kea | Play on Quizizz


What habitats do kea inhabit?
Forest
Kea are alpine parrots and inhabit temperate and subtropical/tropical moist lowland forests, shrubland, grassland, and even artificial terrestrial habitats, such as pastureland and urban areas.
Shrubland
Kea are alpine parrots and inhabit temperate and subtropical/tropical moist lowland forests, shrubland, grassland, and even artificial terrestrial habitats, such as pastureland and urban areas.
Grassland
Kea are alpine parrots and inhabit temperate and subtropical/tropical moist lowland forests, shrubland, grassland, and even artificial terrestrial habitats, such as pastureland and urban areas.
Artificial Terrestrial
Kea are alpine parrots and inhabit temperate and subtropical/tropical moist lowland forests, shrubland, grassland, and even artificial terrestrial habitats, such as pastureland and urban areas.

To what continent is the kea endemic?
Oceania
The kea is endemic to the Oceania continent.
South America
Africa
Asia

Where do kea nest?
Rocks
Kea nest in holes, under logs, in rocky crevasses, burrows under rocks, and among tree roots, mainly within forest.
Tree Roots
Kea nest in holes, under logs, in rocky crevasses, burrows under rocks, and among tree roots, mainly within forest.
Beaches
Treetops

Kea have what type of hierarchies?
Non-Linear
Kea have dominance hierarchies, but these hierarchies are not necessarily linear. For example, an adult male may be dominant to a subadult male, who is dominant to a juvenile male, who, in turn, is dominant to the adult male.
Linear

What is the kea’s diet?
Omnivorous
Kea are opportunistic, omnivorous parrots.
Herbivorous
Carnivorous
Unknown

What is a male kea called?
Cock
A male kea is called a cock.
Bull
Jock
Buck

What is the kea’s rhythm?
Diurnal
Kea are diurnal, rising in the early morning to begin calling and then foraging until late morning. They generally roost during the middle of the day and begin foraging again in the evening, sometimes until after dark, when they go to roost for the night on tree branches.
Nocturnal
Cathemeral
Crepuscular

What is the primary part of a kea’s diet?
Plants
The leaves, buds, and nuts of southern beeches (Nothofagus) are especially important in the kea diet.
Mammals
Insects
Carrion

Kea are important for New Zealand’s tourism industry.
True
Kea are important for New Zealand’s tourism industry and attract crowds when they convene on automobiles.
False

What is the kea’s mating system?
Polygynous
Kea have a polygynous mating system. Males fight for dominance, and the hierarchy is strict.
Polygynandrous
Polyandrous
Monogamous

What is the kea’s evaluation on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species?
Endangered
Kea are currently classified as Endangered on the International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources (IUCN) Red List of Threatened Species.
Critically Endangered
Vulnerable
Near Threatened

What feature originated the kea’s common name?
Loud Flight Call
The common name kea is from Māori, an onomatopoeic representation of their loud, in-flight call, keee-aa.
Colorful Plumage
Opportunistic Diet
Social Lifestyle

What is the kea’s scientific name?
Nestor notabilis
The kea’s scientific name is Nestor notabilis.
Strigops habroptilus
Nestor meridionalis
Nestor productus

Kea thrive in urban environments.
True
It has been proposed that life in an extreme alpine environment has encouraged kea to opportunistically and inquisitively explore their surroundings. Increasingly, the parrots have come into contact with human habitations, sometimes foraging at refuse dumps, ski fields, and cabins.
False

What is the kea’s population?
4,000
It is unknown exactly how many kea are left in the wild. Estimates range from only 2,000 to 5,000 birds. The current population has been estimated by the International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources (IUCN) Red List of Threatened Species to number 6,000 individuals. A conservative estimate of one adult female per 2,000 hectares of forest gives a total population of 4,000 mature individuals in the population. Productivity estimates predict one juvenile for every breeding pair, giving a total population of about 6,000 birds.
400
40,000
40

How do male kea win over females?
Feeding
The male feeds the female a regurgitated meal and mounts her.
Singing
Dancing
Building a Nest

When do kea fledge?
3 Months
Kea hatchlings are altricial and fledge after 13 weeks.
6 Months
2 Weeks
1 Year

Kea are less active during what kind of weather?
Hot
The timing of the kea’s daily activities varies with the weather. Kea are fairly heat-intolerant and spend more time roosting on hot days.
Cold

What is the kea’s movement pattern?
Not a Migrant
Kea are evaluated as “Not a Migrant” on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species.
Altitudinal Migrant
Full Migrant
Nomadic

What preys on kea?
Stoats
Introduced mammalian predators, such as stoats (Mustela erminea), domestic cats (Felis catus), and brushtailed possums (Trichosurus vulpecula) have spread into most of the kea’s range.
Domestic Cats
Introduced mammalian predators, such as stoats (Mustela erminea), domestic cats (Felis catus), and brushtailed possums (Trichosurus vulpecula) have spread into most of the kea’s range.
Possums
Introduced mammalian predators, such as stoats (Mustela erminea), domestic cats (Felis catus), and brushtailed possums (Trichosurus vulpecula) have spread into most of the kea’s range.
Kakas

What is the kea’s social system?
Social
Kea are highly intelligent, social birds.
Social Males, Solitary Females
Solitary Males, Social Females
Solitary

What is the kea’s general use and trade?
Pets
Parrot-smuggling is a lucrative business, and kea are often captured and exported for the black market pet trade.
Medicine
Sport Hunting
Food

What is the kea’s lifespan?
15-20 Years
Kea can live 14.4 years in captivity. Lifespan in the wild has not been thoroughly studied, but the oldest recorded wild bird was at least 22 years of age.
10-15 Years
20-25 Years
5-10 Years

What is the kea’s population trend?
Decreasing
Although kea populations appeared stable in 2001, especially in national parks and other protected areas, their population trend is currently decreasing and continuing to decline rapidly.
Increasing
Stable
Unknown

Kea are killed by farmers for preying on what livestock?
Sheep
Kea have gained a reputation for attacking sheep (Ovis aries), although they usually only prey on wounded or diseased sheep.
Cattle
Goat
Pig

The kea displays sexual dimorphism.
True, males are larger.
The male is about 5% longer than the female and and females weigh about 20 percent less than males.
True, females are larger.
False.

What is a group of kea called?
Flock
A group of kea is called a flock or pandemonium.
Pandemonium
A group of kea is called a flock or pandemonium.
Troop
Congress

What system does the kea inhabit?
Terrestrial
Kea inhabit terrestrial and aerial/arboreal systems.
Aerial/Arboreal
Kea inhabit terrestrial and aerial/arboreal systems.
Fossorial
Aquatic

Kea band together to chase predators from their groups.
True
Kea remain alert for air attacks when foraging and they band together to chase predators that threaten a member of their group.
False

Kea perceive what type of stimuli?
Visual
Kea perceive visual, tactile, auditory, and chemical stimuli.
Auditory
Kea perceive visual, tactile, auditory, and chemical stimuli.
Tactile
Kea perceive visual, tactile, auditory, and chemical stimuli.
Chemical
Kea perceive visual, tactile, auditory, and chemical stimuli.

The curvature of the kea’s beak differs by sex.
True, males’ are more curved.
Kea have decurved upper bills or culmens, but females have shorter, less curved culmens.
True, females’ are more curved.
False.

What region does the kea inhabit?
New Zealand
The kea is one of ten endemic parrot species in New Zealand and is native to the mountains of South Island, New Zealand.
Australia
Tasmania
Papua New Guinea

How many eggs make up a kea clutch?
2-4
Kea have clutches of two to four eggs.
1
5-7
8-10

Which sex of kea initiates copulation?
Digitigrade
The kea has a digitigrade locomotion style.
Plantigrade
Unguligrade
Other

How long is kea incubation?
3-4 Weeks
Kea incubate the eggs for three to four weeks.
1-2 Weeks
5-6 Weeks
7-8 Weeks

What is the kea’s diet?
Generalist
Kea are opportunistic, generalist foragers.
Specialist

Which kea can learn complicated tasks from observing others?
Captive
It has been shown that kea in captivity can learn complicated tasks from observing others, though this ability has not been shown for kea in the wild.
Wild
Both, Captive & Wild
None

What is a female kea called?
Hen
A female kea is called a hen.
Jenny
Doe
Sow

What has the New Zealand Department of Conservation nicknamed the kea?
The Clown
These birds have been called The Clown of New Zealand’s Southern Alps by the New Zealand Department of Conservation.
The Vandal
The Fool
The Bully

What percentage of kea males are allowed to breed each year?
10%
As few as 10% of males may be allowed to breed in certain years.
30%
50%
70%

What threatens the kea?
Invasive Species
This species is believed to be declining rapidly because of predation by introduced mammals and a variety of anthropogenic threats. Climate change may also pose a threat through possible future influences on its high altitude habitat.
Biological Resource Use
This species is believed to be declining rapidly because of predation by introduced mammals and a variety of anthropogenic threats. Climate change may also pose a threat through possible future influences on its high altitude habitat.
Climate Change
This species is believed to be declining rapidly because of predation by introduced mammals and a variety of anthropogenic threats. Climate change may also pose a threat through possible future influences on its high altitude habitat.
Energy Production

When was the kea described?
1856
The kea was described by ornithologist, John Gould, in 1856.
1746
2006
1966

What color is a kea’s underwings?
Red
The underwing coverts are scarlet red-orange with yellow barring and notching that extends to the undersides of the flight feathers.
Blue
Green
Black

What is the kea’s only competitor?
New Zealand Kaka
Only kaka remain to compete with kea and, where their ranges overlap, these two closely related species use many of the same food resources. The kaka is a lowland species, and is smaller and darker than the kea with crimson underparts.
New Zealand Falcon
Kakapo
South Island Takahe

Which season is not part of the kea’s breeding season?
Fall
Kea have been observed breeding at all times of the year, except late autumn. Their main reproductive period lasts from July to January.
Winter
Spring
Summer

What is the color of a juvenile kea’s lower beak?
Yellow
Juvenile kea generally resemble adults, but have yellow eyerings, crowns, and cere, an orange-yellow lower beak, and grey-yellow legs.
Green
Red
Black

What is the kea’s form of locomotion?
Female
Kea copulation is often initiated by the female, who approaches the male and invites play or adopts a submissive posture and solicits preening.
Male

What is the kea’s trophic level?
Primary Consumer
Kea, being opportunistic, generalist omnivorous foragers, are primary, secondary, and higher-level consumers.
Secondary Consumer
Kea, being opportunistic, generalist omnivorous foragers, are primary, secondary, and higher-level consumers.
Tertiary Consumer
Kea, being opportunistic, generalist omnivorous foragers, are primary, secondary, and higher-level consumers.
Apex Predator

When are kea independent?
4-5 Months
Kea disperse from their natal ranges after eighteen to nineteen weeks and travel together in flocks for two to three years before settling down.
6-9 Months
2-3 Years
1-2 Years

Kea sexual maturation differs by sex.
True, females mature sooner.
Male kea are sexually mature after four or five years, while females become sexually mature as early as three years of age.
True, males mature sooner.
False.

In what season do kea consume the most carrion?
Winter
Kea scavenge on trash heaps year round and relish the flesh and bone marrow from carcasses. These food sources become particularly important in winter, when plant foods are scarce.
Summer
Spring
Fall

What percentage of kea nests are normally attacked by predators?
60%
It is estimated that around 60% of kea nests are normally attacked by predators, especially stoats, which may also kill adults; this can rise to as many as 99% of nests being attacked in a stoat plague.
20%
40%
80%

How many kea live in a group?
30-40
Kea live in family groups and aggregations of 30 to 40 birds and often forage at prime feeding grounds, such as garbage dumps, ski fields, and cabins.
3-4
3,000-4,000
300-400

When did the kea become fully protected?
1986
The kea has been fully protected by national law since 1986.
2006
1906
1886

Kea have declined what percentage in the last 36 years?
65%
Density in the upland beech forest of Nelson Lakes National Park in 2011 was approximately one adult female Kea per 2,750 hectares, down from about one per 550 hectares in 1998. This represents an 80% decline in density over 13 years or just over one generation. There are also numerous anecdotal reports of decreases from other unmanaged areas. Although densities in other populations are much higher than at Nelson Lakes, it is likely that kea in areas not subject to predator control are continuing to decline. The total population decline over the last three generations, or 36 years, is likely to have been more than 50% but less than 80%.
85%
45%
25%

Kea infect livestock with what type of fatal bacteria?
Blood-Poisoning
Once kea attack sheep, the wounds can become infected with Clostridium bacteria. The bacteria can cause blood poisoning, which can be fatal to sheep.
Flesh-Eating
Brain-Eating
Liver-Poisoning

Kea beak size differs by sex.
True, males’ are longer.
The male’s upper beak is 12–14% longer than the female’s.
True, females’ are longer.
False.

What is the kea’s parental investment?
Both, Paternal & Maternal
Kea have both maternal and paternal parental investment as both parents care for the young.
Maternal
Paternal
None

What is the kea’s breeding interval?
1 Year
Kea have a breeding interval of 1 year.
2 Years
6 Months
3 Months

The kea’s population is severely fragmented.
False
The kea’s population is not severely fragmented.
True

How much did you know about the kea? Share your results in the comments!

Learn More About the Kea

Kea

Kea (Nestor notabilis)

A new year has begun and with it, FaunaFocus will be featuring a new animal, the kea!

The kea is a highly intelligent and social alpine parrot endemic to New Zealand. As an opportunistic, generalist foraging omnivore, this bird will eat just about anything, but relies mostly on berries and shoots. This brightly colored avian is endangered due to introduced mammals, lead poisoning, and anthropogenic threats.
 

GET INVOLVED

Create art inspired by the kea and share it in the FaunaFocus Discord Server or on social media with #faunafocus. Learn about more ways to get involved with FaunaFocus!

 

EVENTS
Event Date Time (CST)
Holiday Art Trade: Art Deadline January 1 12:00pm
Acrylic CreateAlong January 23 7:00 pm
Free-For-All: Deadline January 29 12:00 pm
Free-For-All: Livestream January 30 7:00 pm

 


Image | © Barni1, Some Rights Reserved, Pixabay

Kea

Kea

Kea are currently “Endangered” and declining rapidly due to predation by introduced mammals and a variety of anthropogenic threats.

Kea are currently classified as Endangered on the International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources (IUCN) Red List of Threatened Species. This species is believed to be declining rapidly because of predation by introduced mammals and a variety of anthropogenic threats. Climate change may also pose a threat through possible future influences on its high altitude habitat. For this reason it is listed as Endangered.

The kea is a BirdLife restricted-range species and is subject to international trade regulations under CITES appendix II, as are most parrots.


Image | ©️ Aftab Uzzaman, Some Rights Reserved, (CC BY-NC 2.0)
Sources | (BirdLife International, 2017; del Hoyo, Elliott, Sargatal, Christie, & de Juana, 2017; Diamond & Bond, 1999; Orr-Walker, Kemp, Adams, & Roberts, 2015; van Klink & Crowell 2015; Williams, 2001)

Learn More About the Kea

Koala

Koala

Koalas were nearly exterminated in the early 20th century because they were extensively hunted for their warm, thick fur and their environments were destroyed by fires caused by humans.

Commercial harvesting took place across the koala’s range towards the end of the 19th century and early 20th century and koalas were nearly exterminated. Millions of koalas were killed for their warm, thick pelts for a large export industry in Victoria, New South Wales, and Queensland. Koala subpopulations were severely depleted and their environments were destroyed by fires caused by humans.

This was banned in Victoria in the 1890s, and it continued sporadically and under regulation in Queensland until 1927. After 1927, as a result of public outcry, the koala became legally protected. Koalas are now protected and can no longer be hunted. There is no evidence, however, that the early spate of commercial harvesting had any long-term impact on the overall population.


Image | ©️ Nathan Rupert, Some Rights Reserved, (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)
Sources | (Dubuc & Eckroad, 1999; Hrdina & Gordon, 2004, Gordon & Hrdina 2005, Gordon, et al., 2008; MacDonald, 1995)

 

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Koala Host Train & FFA
Judges
Noelle M. Brooks Lucy from WWF Arvemis
Date December 2020 Theme Koala
Entries 5 Winner Sarah

December has come to a close and the FaunaFocus Free-For-All has concluded with 5 varied artworks all drawing inspiration from the vulnerable koala. Each piece depicted these adorable marsupials using a wide variety of media and styles.

Congratulations to the winner Sarah, who used digital media to depict an emotional scene of a mother koala and her baby. This beautifully haunting piece used muted colors to depict the suffocating smoke of the Australian bushfires and a pop of bright orange tones to enhance the vibrant light of the blaze. With a baby koala peering into the viewer’s eyes, the spectator feels challenged to act in order to help the koalas in their plight.

Sarah has won a prize pack from WWF!

As a previous month’s Free-For-All winner, Sarah has also selected the first FaunaFocus to be featured in 2021, the endangered kea!


FaunaFocus Calendar | Free-For-All | Free-For-All Archives

Koala

Koala

At high population densities, koalas can defoliate preferred tree species, causing tree death and subsequent koala population crash and making the species difficult to manage.

Public concern for the koala is high and there are management problems with many populations. Remnant populations living at high densities in isolated patches of habitat are at greatest risk. Effective management of some of the koala’s threats on the mainland could lead to excessive abundance and result in pest problems similar to those occurring on Kangaroo Island and in parts of Victoria.

At high population densities, koalas can defoliate preferred tree species, causing tree death and subsequent koala population crash. As such, management of the koala can be difficult.

Populations that are protected can reach such high numbers in an area that they destroy the trees on which they feed. Often portions of populations have to be relocated in order to reduce the number of individuals in a given area. However, this is complicated by the shortage of suitable forest areas where surplus animals can be released.


Image | ©️ Nathan Rupert, Some Rights Reserved, (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)
Sources | (Dubuc & Eckroad, 1999; MacDonald, 1995; Martin, Handasyde, & Krockenberger, 2008; Menkhorst, 2004, 2008; Woinarski & Burbidge, 2020)

 

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Koala

Koala

Climate change is expected to lead to an increased rate of koala population reduction over the next 20-30 years, and the impacts of other threats will magnify over this period.

Climate change is likely to have severe consequences for the koala.

Climate change is expected to lead to an increased rate of population reduction over the next 20-30 years, and the impacts of other threats will magnify over this period.


Image | ©️ Nathan Rupert, Some Rights Reserved, (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)
Sources | (Adams-Hosking, Grantham, Rhodes, McAlpine, Moss, 2011; Adams-Hosking, McAlpine, Rhodes, Grantham, & Moss, 2012; Adams-Hosking, Moss, Rhodes, Grantham, & McAlpine, 2011; Gordon, Hrdina, & Patterson, 2006; McAlpine, et al., 2012; Melzer, Carrick, Menkhorst, Lunney, & John, 2000; The Senate Environment and Communications References Committee, 2011; Threatened Species Scientific Committee, 2012; Woinarski & Burbidge, 2020)

 

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Koala

Koala

The koala’s population size has declined about 30% over the last 18-24 years due to climate change and a severe decline in inland regions most exposed to recent drought.

The conservation status of the koala has been contested, in part because of uncertainty about relevant population parameters and marked variation in population trends across its large range.

The koala’s total geographic range and overall distribution has contracted significantly due to loss of large areas of habitat since European settlement. This decline was primarily due to disease, bushfires, and widespread habitat destruction in the early decades of the 20th century. In Queensland, extent of occurrence and area of occupancy have contracted by about 30%.

In 2012, the overall rate of decline in population size over the last 18-24 years, or three generations, was estimated at about 28% by the Threatened Species Scientific Committee. This rate is substantially influenced by a severe decline in inland regions most exposed to recent drought.

A separate expert elicitation process involving independent estimates from 15 koala experts of population size in every bioregion inhabited by koalas concluded that the koala population size reduction or projected reduction over three generations is a mean of 29%, albeit with substantial variation amongst experts in estimation of this rate.

Climate change is expected to lead to an increased rate of population reduction over the next 20-30 years, and the impacts of other threats will magnify over this period.


Image | ©️ Nathan Rupert, Some Rights Reserved, (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)
Sources | (Gordon, Hrdina, & Patterson, 2006; McAlpine, et al., 2012; Melzer, Carrick, Menkhorst, Lunney, & John, 2000; The Senate Environment and Communications References Committee, 2011; Threatened Species Scientific Committee, 2012; Woinarski & Burbidge, 2020)

 

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Koala

Koala

Koalas are currently threatened by habitat fragmentation and modification, bushfires, and disease, but their main threat is habitat destruction.

Current threats to the koala include continued habitat destruction, fragmentation, and modification (which makes them vulnerable to predation by dogs, vehicle strikes, and other factors), bushfires, and disease, as well as drought-associated mortality in habitat fragments. Koalas are also threatened by the microorganism Chlamydia psittaci, which can make them sterile.

Currently, the koala’s main threat is habitat destruction.


Image | ©️ Nathan Rupert, Some Rights Reserved, (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)
Sources | (Dubuc & Eckroad, 1999; MacDonald, 1995; Woinarski & Burbidge, 2020; Woinarski, Burbidge, & Harrison, 2014)

 

Learn More About the Koala

 

Wildlife Conservation

FaunaFocus has collaborated with organizations, such as the World Wildlife Fund for Nature (WWF) and the American Eagle Foundation, in order to raise $4,455.50 for wildlife conservation efforts.

Koala Host Train

Koala Host Train

Throughout the month of December, FaunaFocus joined the World Wildlife Fund-Australia (WWF)‘s Keep Koalas Climbing Wild-Livestream event and hosted a 24-hour host train on Twitch featuring 13 different artists and benefitting the vulnerable koala!

Together, viewers and artists were able to raise A$2,405, or USD$1,827.68, to help WWF double koala populations in Australia, before it’s too late. With these funds, WWF will be able to restore crucial koala habitat using drone seeding technology, create wildlife corridors, and build new wildlife and medical facilities.

Thank you to the moderators that helped organize this event, the artists that volunteered their time and creative skills, and the viewers who attended the event and donated to the cause.

FaunaFocus is always eager to put together similar events for the conservation of endangered species!

Koala

Koala

The koala is evaluated as “Vulnerable” on the IUCN Red List due to its projected rate of decline as a result of climate change, habitat destruction, and disease.

The koala is evaluated as “Vulnerable” on the International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources (IUCN) Red List of Threatened Species. The IUCN considers that the conservation status of the koala is border-line between Near Threatened and Vulnerable, but adopts a precautionary assessment given the proximity of the estimated current and projected rate of decline to the threshold, and published assessments of the likelihood of additional and compound impacts due to climate change.

The koala holds no special status, although the Environment Australia Biodiversity Group calls the koala lower risk-near threatened.

Current threats to the koala include continued habitat destruction, fragmentation, and modification (which makes them vulnerable to predation by dogs, vehicle strikes, and other factors), bushfires, and disease, as well as drought-associated mortality in habitat fragments. Koalas are also threatened by the microorganism Chlamydia psittaci, which can make them sterile. Currently, the koala’s main threat is habitat destruction.


Image | ©️ Nathan Rupert, Some Rights Reserved, (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)
Sources | (Dubuc & Eckroad, 1999; MacDonald, 1995; Woinarski & Burbidge, 2020; Woinarski, Burbidge, & Harrison, 2014)

 

Learn More About the Koala

 

Koala

Koala

Young koalas weigh less than 0.5 g. when born and live in the mother’s pouch for 5-7 months feeding on milk and predigested leaves.

Young koalas weigh less than 0.5 grams when born and attach to one of the nipples in the pouch.

They have a pouch life of 5-7 months, feeding on milk or predigested leaves that are nontoxic, and are weaned at 6-12 months. Toward the end of their pouch life, the young feed regularly on material passed through the mother’s digestive tract. Once the young begins to feed on leaves, growth is rapid.

The young leaves the pouch after seven months and is carried about on the mother’s back. By 11 months of age, the young is independent but may continue to live close to the mother for a few months.


Image | ©️ Mathias Appel, Public Domain, (CC0 1.0)
Sources | (Dubuc & Eckroad, 1999; Nowak, 1999)

 

Learn More About the Koala

 

Koala

Koala

Although there is no national recovery plan for the koala, there’s numerous captive breeding facilities internationally.

There is no national recovery plan for the koala; however there is a national conservation and management strategy, a recovery plan in New South Wales, a management strategy in Victoria, and a conservation plan and management program in Queensland.

A recent parliamentary inquiry concluded that the national conservation and management strategy was largely ineffective.

In part because of its iconic status, there has been a relatively long history of conservation management directed specifically at the koala. This has included a substantial history of translocations, including conservation marooning and re-introduction, mostly in Victoria, and introduction, mostly in South Australia, some land management and forestry prescriptions, monitoring, substantial research, and localized management of some threats.

There are numerous captive breeding facilities in Australia, and internationally.


Image | ©️ Nathan Rupert, Some Rights Reserved, (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)
Sources | (Masters, Duka, Berris, & Moss, 2004; Menkhorst, 2004, 2008; NRMMC, 2010; NSW DECC, 2008; Queensland EPA, 2006; The Senate Environment and Communications References Committee, 2011; Woinarski & Burbidge, 2020)

 

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Koala

Koala

Female koalas are seasonally polyestrous and usually breed once a year giving birth to 1-2 young in mid-summer after a gestation of 25-35 days.

Female koalas are seasonally polyestrous, with an estrous cycle of about 27-30 days.

Females can produce young at annual intervals and usually breed once every year. Births per adult female per year average 0.3-0.8.

The gestation period is 25-35 days with births occurring in mid-summer of December and January, ranging from October to May. Litters generally consist of only one young, but twins have been reported.


Image | ©️ Mathias Appel, Public Domain, (CC0 1.0)
Sources | (Dubuc & Eckroad, 1999; McLean, 2003; Nowak, 1999; Woinarski & Burbidge, 2020)

 

Learn More About the Koala

 

Koala

Koala

During the breeding season, male koalas use loud, bellowing calls and resonant, growling expirations to advertise their presence and warn off males.

During the breeding season, male koalas use loud, bellowing calls that consist of a series of harsh inhalations each followed by a resonant, growling expiration. These calls advertise an individual’s presence and warn off other males.

The only vocalization generally heard from females and sub-adult males is a harsh, wailing distress call given when harassed by adult males.


Image | ©️ Keren Stiles, Some Rights Reserved, (CC BY-NC 2.0)
Sources | (Dubuc & Eckroad, 1999; MacDonald, 1995)

 

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Koala

Koala

Koalas are polygynous and breed seasonally, but males don’t usually mate until they reach 4 years old because competition for females requires a larger size.

Koalas are polygynous and breed seasonally. During the breeding season in October-February, adult males are very active at night and move constantly through their range, both ejecting male rivals and mating with any receptive females.

Female koalas are sexually mature at two years of age. Males are fertile at two years but usually don’t mate until they reach four simply because competition for females requires a larger size.


Image | ©️ Mathias Appel, Public Domain, (CC0 1.0)
Sources | (Dubuc & Eckroad, 1999; Jackson, 2007; MacDonald, 1995; Woinarski & Burbidge, 2020)

 

Learn More About the Koala

 

Koala

Koala

Koalas copulate in trees for less than two minutes at a time with the male grasping the back of the female’s neck with his teeth.

Koala copulation is brief, generally lasting less than two minutes, and occurs in a tree.

TDuring mating, the male will grasp the back of the female’s neck with his teeth.


Image | ©️ Nathan Rupert, Some Rights Reserved, (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)
Sources | (Dubuc & Eckroad, 1999; MacDonald, 1995)

 

Learn More About the Koala