Story: Birds of mountains and open country

Kea plumage

Seen from above, kea are well camouflaged – they have green-brown plumage with just a red rump patch above the tail. The drab colours are no doubt to avoid the attention of birds of prey, in particular the now-extinct giant Haast’s eagle. However, the feathers under their wings are scarlet with dark brown and gold bars.

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Photograph by Ross Blanks

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Sound file from Birds of New Zealand. Compact disc. © Viking Sevenseas NZ (P O Box 152, Paraparaumu), 1980. All rights reserved.

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How to cite this page:

Christina Troup, 'Birds of mountains and open country - Kea – the mountain parrot', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, (accessed 3 March 2024)

Story by Christina Troup, published 24 Sep 2007, reviewed & revised 17 Feb 2015