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Kakapo Rescue: Saving the World's Strangest Parrot (Scientists in the Field)

4.12  ·  Rating Details ·  940 Ratings  ·  235 Reviews
On remote Codfish Island off the southern coast of New Zealand live the last ninety-one kakapo parrots on earth. These trusting, flightless, and beautiful birds—the largest and most unusual parrots on earth—have suffered devastating population loss.

Now, on an island refuge with the last of the species, New Zealand’s National Kakapo Recovery Team is working to restore the k
Hardcover, 74 pages
Published May 24th 2010 by HMH Books for Young Readers (first published 2010)
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Sep 22, 2016 Emily rated it it was amazing
The kakapo, a type of parrot that lives in New Zealand, is one of the most amusing animals on the planet. I first heard about the kakapo while reading a book called Last Chance to See, a book written by a famous science fiction author, Douglas Adams, about a trip he took round the world to observe several endangered species of animal in the wild. One of those animals was the kakapo.
He wrote that “the Kakapo is a kind of parrot. It lives in New Zealand. It’s a flightless parrot – it has forgotten
Oct 08, 2010 Betsy rated it it was amazing
One Sentence Review: Not only does this make the greatest nonfiction booktalk of all time ("It's about gigantic parrots that can't fly and smell like honey!!") but the storytelling and the photography really set this one apart from the pack.
Jan 04, 2011 Donna rated it it was amazing
This book pretty much has it all - lovable characters, humor, drama, danger, romance, tragedy and a hopeful ending. The Kakapo are introduced by name; all are adorable and full of personality. The scientists who appear in the book take a back seat to the birds, and I think this is a wise choice. Lisa is an attentive mother and Richard Henry is a distinguished senior statesman. One male, Sirocco, was raised by humans and thinks that he's human, too. His efforts to find a mate add humor, romance a ...more
Oct 10, 2010 Reader rated it it was amazing
If I could kiss a book and tell it I loved it with all my heart, you just know that's what I'd be doing with this one. Montgomery has a knack for finding interesting subjects for her nonfiction chapter books, but she's outdone herself with this one. Aside from the tantalizing term "World's Strangest Parrot" in the title, there's not a soul alive who won't finish this book and immediately want a kakapo of their very own. Practically driven to extinction in the wake of humans and other animals, th ...more
Jan 02, 2011 Aaron rated it really liked it
This endearing book introduces readers to the kakapo, which is a flightless bird that is considered the heaviest parrot in the world. Native to New Zealand, these birds have been brought to the edge of extinction primarily through human settlement (and the accompanying non-native wildlife brought with it) of the islands. There are now only about 90 individuals left among the species.

Author and Montgomery and photographer Bishop got to spend 10 days on Codfish Island, which has been set aside as
Feb 23, 2011 Jess rated it it was amazing
Shelves: juv, non-fiction, sibert
I find it difficult to convey my enthusiasm for this book without sounding ridiculous. "It's about these parrots! That smell like honey! And they're almost extinct, and these people had to wait five years for a chick to hatch so they could go to New Zealand for ten days to write this book! You should totally read it." Yeah. But that's pretty much how I feel.

The story has a great sense of urgency, both because the parrots are so endangered (87 are living at one point during the course of the boo
The kapako is a rare species of flightless parrot unique to New Zealand. It is a large bird, weighing in at nearly 9 lbs, with soft, mossy-green feathers that smell like a mixture of honey and peat. Its large size and generally sanguine nature make it an easy target for predators (both human and introduced species such as rats, cats, and stoats), and it was hunted nearly into extinction in the past couple centuries. Small populations of the birds were discovered about 70 years ago, and the remai ...more
Mar 23, 2011 Bdalton rated it it was amazing
The Kakapo is a rare flightless bird from New Zealand. This is the story of the volunteers, rangers, and scientists fighting for its preservation as a species. The book is narrative non-fiction at its best and the photographs by Nic Bishop are divine. This book won the Robert F. Sibert award for juvenile non-fiction in 2011. This is a great book for anyone who likes stories about animals, animal behavior, and survival. Facts about what you can do to help preserve the Kakapo are in the back of th ...more
Apr 06, 2011 Sarah rated it it was amazing
I picked this up for an earth day book talk I'm doing, and I'm SO glad I did. Wow, I'd never thought to experience such a broad range of emotions in a book about birds. I'm excited to book talk it--along with hoot and some other great titles. I went to the Kakapo rescue site and saw that as of March 2011 there were 100 Kakapo, up from the total in the book, but several important birds have died. In one part of the book they refer to watching the birds as being like a soap opera, which it does ha ...more
Apr 14, 2011 Kate rated it it was amazing
Confession: I wasn't much of a non-fiction reader growing up. I loved being swept up in stories. I loved the mystery, the drama, the tension of a great novel, whether it took place in a fantasy world or a town that felt just like mine. And when I thought about non-fiction, I generally thought of things like my junior high school social studies book, which was....fine, I guess...and even occasionally interesting, but certainly not something I'd read for fun.

But lately, I've turned into something
Apr 17, 2011 Lynn rated it it was amazing
Very interesting species; fantastic photographs by Nic Bishop!
Andree Sanborn
May 15, 2011 Andree Sanborn rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2011, dcf, may, nf, dcf-2011-2012
Kakapo Rescue: Saving the World's Strangest Parrot

What a beautiful book. This is a non-fiction account of the efforts to save the Kakapo parrot in New Zealand from extinction. The photography is stunning, the story is sad, the efforts to save the parrot are so valiant and the writing is engaging. I learned that the natural history of New Zealand is utterly fantastic — and has almost disappeared. When this book was written, there were only 87 Kakapo parrots in the entire world. Tonight, according
Becca Buckman
Dec 01, 2011 Becca Buckman rated it it was amazing
The kakapo (KAR-ka-poe) “is the rarest and heaviest parrot, the only flightless and night-active parrot, and undoubtedly the strangest parrot in the world” (p. 1). This story explores to captivating, yet rare, world of the colorful bird from New Zealand. Where at one time millions of kakapo called New Zealand home, now only 91 are left in the southern country. A rescue mission is in effect by the many scientists and volunteers who are trying to save the animals from extinction. Kakapo Rescue: Sa ...more
Kim Bickes
Mar 04, 2012 Kim Bickes rated it it was amazing
Kakapo Rescue is a non-fiction book that won the Robert Sibert award in 2011. When just glancing at this book I wasn't too sure that I would enjoy this book. To be honest there were many scientific pictures, so I thought that it would be full of scientific vocabulary that would make the book very hard to understand. It was in fact almost the exact opposite when I started to read the book. Ever since I was a young child, I have always loved all kinds of animals. I always had a very strong connect ...more
Apr 08, 2012 Rebecca rated it it was amazing
Shelves: nonfiction
Kakapo parrots are the rarest in the world--fewer than 100 survive, on a tiny island off New Zealand. They are flightless, nocturnal, heavy, and smell like honey. This is an account of the kakapo, and the people trying desperately to save them.

This book got stars on pretty much every review, and it deserves them. The topic is fascinating and compelling, the pictures are wonderful, and the book is well-structured and well-told. Narrative nonfiction for middle school is making a comeback, and I th
This book chronicles the visit of author, Sy Montgomery and photographer, Nic Bishop’s visit to Codfish Island off the southern tip of New Zealand to show the steps being taken to save the kakapo parrot from the brink of extinction. This book won the Robert F. Sibert award in 2011. It is especially detailed and incredibly interesting. The book begins with a story of one of the parrots. At the end of the first chapter, it gives basic facts about the kakapo parrots. The next chapter is about the h ...more
Jun 05, 2012 A_Cathy rated it it was amazing
Shelves: info-bios
This book written by Sy Montgomery and photographed by Nic Bishop is about the extinction and rescue of the Kakapo(Kar-ka-poe)Bird from New Zealand told by nest-minders(a team that observes, cares for, and helps rescue kakapo's and other to-be extinct animals);scientists in the field. With only eighty-seven in existence, kakapos were all taken and put on Codfish Island in New Zealand (a sterilized, nearly impossible island to get to). Nest-minders are sterilized and taken to Codfish for short am ...more
Jun 21, 2012 Tiffany rated it it was amazing
Shelves: children-s-lit
This book could be read by a girl or boy who is in the grade 5 to 8. This book is about trying to save the kakapo parrots that are going extinct. By having fourteen people who share one hut and the passion to save these kakapo parrots to have them make a comeback in New Zealand.

This book has real live photos with bright color and pictures. There is also captions with the pictures as well.

Robert F. Sibert Medal and Honor Books 2011
Kathleen Whitaker
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
May 30, 2015 Hannah rated it it was amazing
Audience: Intermediate grades, animal lovers

Appeal: Beautiful photographs, narrative format, helpful captions under pictures.

Award: 2011 Robert F. Sibert medal winner
Jessica Jackson
I really liked this book. It was full of great facts about the rare species of Kakapo parrots that live in New Zealand. The pictures were really great, and made reading more interesting with the photographs to reference. The audience for this book would be for more advanced readers in the elelmentary or possibly middle school setting.
Aug 13, 2012 Holly rated it really liked it
I think people who devote their lives researching, studying, rescuing, and just loving animals are fascinating. This book is about a team of people who are devoted to saving the critically endangered Kakapo Parrots who live on the remote Codfish Island off the southern coast of New Zealand. Only 91 parrots remain. The photographs are beautiful, and although there are plenty of nonfiction merits to the text, Sy Montgomery also captures the emotion and drama of the ups and downs of animal rescue.
Lady Lioness
Sy Montgomery's books got me interested in endangered and extinct species. I think I started with Journey of the Pink Dolphins and things snowballed from there. When The Good Pig's paperback came out in 2007, it was my go-to rec at Borders. "A good book to read? Do you like animals? Yes? Read this." Montgomery writes primarily for children, but I check periodically to make sure I haven't missed anything, which is how I found Kakapo Rescue.

First off, Nic Bishop's photographs are gorgeous. His pe
Jul 21, 2013 Michele rated it really liked it
Kakapo Rescue: Saving the World’s Strangest Parrot
Robert F. Sibert Medal Winner 2011
By Sy Montgomery
Audience: intermediate
Genre: nonfiction
Absolutely stunning photographs accompany this detailed documentary of the journey a group of researchers take to rescue the kakapos. Truly an adventure- I would use it as a source book, rather than assigning it for kids to read cover to cover.

Activities/Questions for each level of Bloom’s Taxonomy with rationale

Remembering: Where is Codfish Island located i
Peggy Gay
Jul 19, 2013 Peggy Gay rated it it was amazing
Audience Primary (adapted)
Genre: Nonfiction, Informational, Endangered Species
Twin Text: It's My World Too, Discover Endangered Animal and Their Habitat by Elena Pasquali(2010) (for PK - 1st); The Zoo with the Empty Cage by Steve Brezenoff(2010) (for 2nd and 3rd grade students)

This book is written for older students: here is my plans for adaptations to present to younger students.
The book has awesome pictures, I would use the pictures to catch the interest of the younger students. I would have s
Jul 23, 2013 Alison rated it really liked it
Audience: primary (ebook)

Genre: non-fiction - informational

Fiction Twin Text: Lofting, H. (2013). The story of Dr. Doolittle. Lanham: Start Pub. LLC.

This book chronicles the efforts that animal activists have made in order to save the kakapo parrot, which is an endangered species. It details the environment that kakapo parrots live in (they are native to New Zealand) and interesting facts about the bird (the only travel on foot). As students read the book, they get to know the various people w
Jubilation Lee
Floating around Reddit somewhere is a line I read once about how, if you met someone who had just appeared from 1950 and tried to explain modern technology to them, you’d say that you have a pocket-sized device that can access all information known to humankind and you use that device to argue with random strangers and look at pictures of cats.

And that’s totally true!

But one of the amazing things about having all this information available to you is that sometimes—in between the Grumpy Cats and
Jessica Gilligan
Dec 05, 2014 Jessica Gilligan rated it it was amazing
Shelves: libs-642
Montgomery, Sy. (2010). Kakapo Rescue. Houghton Mifflin Books for Children: New York, NY.

Junior Book Log: Sibert Award

The Kakapo parrot is the largest parrot on earth, and it is nearly extinct. Weighing in at nine pounds on average, these birds don't fly. They're friendly and curious by nature. They're also nocturnal, and loudly crash through the forest to forage for food. In a habitat where few predators abound, the kakapo used to get along just fine with these quirky characteristics for a bird
Jenna Snyder
Title: Kakapo Rescue: Saving the World’s Strangest Parrot
Author: Sy Montgomery
Illustrator: Photographs by Nic Bishop
Genre: Nonfiction, Robert F. Sibert Winner
Theme(s): Conservation, Science, Parrots
Opening line/sentence: It’s hours past midnight.
Brief Book Summary: There used to be a surplus of the beloved flightless bird, the kakapo, but when humans started taking over New Zealand, adding animals that started to prey on the defenseless bird, they started to dwindle quickly in numbers. Now that
Marissa Chiaro
Oct 10, 2016 Marissa Chiaro rated it really liked it
This book provided an amazing amount of detail and facts. I liked this book and thought it would be perfect for a research project. The photos that are in this book are outstanding and relate to the factual information being given and shared.
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Part Indiana Jones, part Emily Dickinson, as the Boston Globe describes her, Sy Montgomery is an author, naturalist, documentary scriptwriter, and radio commentator who has traveled to some of the worlds most remote wildernesses for her work. She has worked in a pit crawling with 18,000 snakes in Manitoba, been hunted by a tiger in India, swum with pink dolphins in the Amazon, and been undressed b ...more
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