Pukeko: Swamped in Controversy
Guest Blogger: Campaign Manager for the Pukeko, Radio Presenter & Writer, Damian Christie
If ever there was an underbird in this competition, it’s the Pukeko. But there are so many reasons why the humble Swamp Hen should be Bird of the Year 2009.
The Pukeko is here to stay. Despite the best efforts of the nice people at Forest & Bird to set the mood, too many of our so-called “treasured” birds do themselves no favours in the downstairs department. Whether they’re picky, or simply lack the requiste knowledge on the finer points of breeding, many of our precious natives score as much as a thirty year old Morrissey fan who still lives with his parents. By contrast, the Pukeko is a prodigious lover. Frankly, if anything, the Pukeko probably spreads itself a bit thin in that department, and already as Campaign Manager I’ve had to pull favours to keep them out of the gossip pages. Chances are, if you read any snippet beginning “Which cheeky swamp hen was seen late on Friday night…”, you’ll know who they’re talking about. Point being, Pukeko are everywhere, and there’s only going to be more of them in the future – why not back one of nature’s winners?
Okay, sure they’re not endemic to New Zealand -they are native though- they’ve been here for about a thousand years or less. Just like Maori. So if you don’t vote for the Pukeko because they’ve only been here a thousand years, then you’re pretty much a racist.
But the main reason to get in behind the Pukeko for Bird of the Year 2009, is they are awesome. They don’t hide in dense bush and only come out at night (*cough* bloody lame kiwis *cough*) in fact they stand on the side of motorways to make it easier for toursits to see them as they drive past in tour vans. They’re super cute as babies, you can feed them your left over chips (but you probably shouldn’t) and they can be trained to unplug stuff around the house too.
Get in behind the Mighty Puke’ this year – Give us your vote.
Damian Christie – Pukeko Campaign Manager.
To vote go here – http://www.forestandbird.org.nz/poll