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The Kokako's numbers have been steadily declining since the arrival of the European and are now being threatened by predators and by the opossums which require a similar food source. They are one of N.Z.'s most ancient species with no living relatives.

The Kokako has a particularly weak flight, and a rich, flute-like song. They love singing very loudly for long periods of time and also sing a duet with their mate. They appear to mate for life and always stay within the distance of a call. When available, they eat succulent fruits as well as a wide variety of foods ranging from foliage to scale insects, slugs, beetles and moths. Three birds have been released on Tiritiri Matangi (August 1997).