|Run away from the hills! If you see hills, run the other way!|
This is a difficult letter to write for. I could continue with the theme from J and write about Kermit but we're not at home to Mr Continuity.
Thus K is for Kiwis.
first the schoolyard version
- They are the native bird of Aotearoa.
- They are endangered.
- They are sweet and cuddly, there is nobody in the world who wouldn't want to pet a kiwi. If someone says they don't it's because they are lying to themselves and others.
So people are told these facts, have their pictures taken with the kiwi enclosure and go home happy and satisfied.But there is a fourth fact that very few people are aware of.
- Kiwis are determined to get their country back.
As these birds are surrounded by predators on all sides, wild cats, dogs, ferrets, stoats and possums. The kiwi has managed to form an alliance with the humans. They will run around and look cute for anyone with a camera and the humans will help them with breeding programs, and predator eradication. (1)
The problem is that we are going about it all wrong.
First of all the breeding programs are a good idea because that helps to keep the numbers up, but after the chicks are born they are taught only how to be kiwis and that is where the mistakes are being made.
The kiwis are being targeted by everything simply because they are the avian equivalent of the nerdy student who goes around with a pocket protector and a tie, all the time (2)
Instead of reinforcing this belief what we need to do is simple, when the kiwi egg is ready to hatch it is taken away and given to a hunting dog and, in the same way a duck raised by a hen will think it's a chicken, the young kiwi "pup" will grow up believing that it is merely a strangly shaped dog.
Eventually they would be placed back into the wild and these improved kiwis would have a suprise ready for the ferret brothers when they arrive to hassle the fresh meat. (3)
It would take a while but the predators would eventually learn that the Kiwi is the top dog round these parts and keep their heads down when the roving mobs are about. (4)
Once the kiwis had gotten properly settled and the mysterious Mr Beak had taken all the mobs under his wing they would then begin to go after other, larger prey. They would go after the wildest of wild pigs, bringing them down with a combination of finely sharpened beaks to the vulnerable parts.
Inside ten years of this scheme starting there would be
A: No predators in the land and
B: Global respect for our national symbol, which, by the way is no longer endangered (5)
C: Hunting Kiwis would be in great demand all around the world
- It's a win win situation because we get the cute kiwis and they don't have to worry about trying to find a hot chick for Saturday night if you know what I mean
- That one that not even the geeks want to have around
- Double the surprise if it's a cat that attempts to shake them down
- If they flew it would be flocks
- Although the number of kiwi/canine pairings is a trifle worrying