which bird won new zealand 2023

However, it has also caused controversy in the past few years due to claims of “voter fraud” in 2020 and the announcement of a bat as the winner in the following year.

“We’re not surprised these endearing qualities caught the attention of an influential bird enthusiast with a massive following,” the group said, alluding to the “high powered campaign” of HBO host Oliver that brought down online voting systems.

According to conservationists, the bird was nearly driven extinct in the United Kingdom in the 19th century and is still in danger today.

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The results of New Zealand’s Bird of the Century poll are in, and the Australasian crested grebe—also referred to as the pūteketeke or the “puking” bird—won by a wide margin with over 290,000 votes. John Oliver, a comedian and talk show host, is a major supporter of this bird.

About 200 pūteketeke remained in the wild just 40 years ago, according to Rykers. This was due to the species’ susceptibility to the introduction of nonnative predators into their habitats and to irresponsible boating, which frequently destroyed their floating nests. Through grassroots efforts, their numbers have climbed to about 1,000. Advertisement.

Comedian John Oliver borrowed a page from history books to handle the pūteketeke’s campaign for New Zealand’s “Bird of the Year” title. “This is what democracy is all about — America interfering in foreign elections,” he joked earlier this month on his show, “Last Week Tonight.” ”.

Among the comedian’s antics was a billboard in Wellington, New Zealand that portrayed the pūteketeke as “Lord of the Wings.” Oliver’s banner along the famous Champs-Élysées in Paris depicted the bird next to the French word “Beauty” and every cliché known to man, including drinking wine, smoking cigarettes, and donning berets while standing close to the Eiffel Tower. Grace. Elegance. “Help us crown a real king,” was written on a van that was driving around London carrying an image of a bird on a throne. ”.

After putting up billboards in some of the busiest corners of the world, flying banners over Brazil’s Ipanema Beach and dressing up as the bird on television, Oliver’s contender harnessed more than 280,000 votes in a contest that had previously seen a maximum voter turnout of about 56,000 in 2021. It was a landslide victory for a species Oliver described as “weird, puking birds with colorful mullets” and a quite unusual repertoire of mating rituals. The pūteketeke was declared the winner on Tuesday afternoon — Wednesday morning in New Zealand — two days after contest organizers originally intended to make the announcement, which was delayed because of the magnitude of votes.Advertisement

After Oliver detailed those efforts during the Nov. 5 episode of “Last Week Tonight,” the pūteketeke received more than 10,000 votes overnight. While Rykers said it was “fantastic that people around the world now know about New Zealand’s birds and clearly have a lot of love for them,” feathers were nonetheless ruffled in New Zealand.Advertisement


Who won bird of the year New Zealand 2023?