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Nestor (genus) facts for kids

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Nestor meridionalis.jpg
New Zealand Kaka
(Nestor meridionalis)
Scientific classification

Lesson, 1830

N. notabilis
N. meridionalis
N. productus
N. spec.

The genus Nestor is one of two genera of the family Nestoridae. Together with the Kakapo in the Strigopidae tribe, they form the small parrot superfamily Strigopoidea. The genus Nestor contains two extant parrot species from New Zealand and two extinct species from Norfolk Island, Australia and Chatham Island, New Zealand, respectively. All species are large stocky birds with short squarish tails.


There are two surviving species and at least one well documented extinct species in the genus Nestor. Very little is known about the fourth, the Chatham kaka, which may have been conspecific with another kaka species.

  • Kea, Nestor notabilis
  • New Zealand kaka, Nestor meridionalis
    • North Island kaka, Nestor meridionalis septentrionalis
    • South Island kaka, Nestor meridionalis meridionalis
  • Norfolk kaka, Nestor productus (extinct)
  • Chatham kaka, Nestor sp. (extinct)
Common name
(binomial name)
Image Description Range and habitat

(Nestor notabilis)

Kea (Nestor notabilis) -on ground-8.jpg
48 cm (19 in) long. Mostly olive-green with scarlet underwings and rump. Dark-edged feathers. Dark brown beak, iris, legs, and feet. Male has longer bill. New Zealand: South Island

High-level forests and subalpine scrublands 850–1400 m AMSL.
South Island kaka

(Nestor meridionalis meridionalis)

Kaka -Stewart Island-1c.jpg
Similar to the North Island kaka, but slightly smaller, brighter colours, the crown is almost white, and the bill is longer and more arched in males. New Zealand: South Island

Unbroken tracts of Nothofagus and Podocarpus forests 450–850 m AMSL in summer and 0–550 m in winter.
North Island kaka

(Nestor meridionalis septentrionalis)

About 45 cm (18 in) long. Mainly olive-brown with dark feather edges. Crimson underwings, rump, and collar. The cheeks are golden/brown. The crown is greyish. New Zealand: North Island

Unbroken tracts of Nothofagus and Podocarpus forests between 450–850 m AMSL in summer and 0–550 m in winter.
Norfolk kaka

(Nestor productus)
Extinct by 1851 approx.

About 38 cm long. Mostly olive-brown upperparts, (reddish-)orange cheeks and throat, straw-coloured breast, thighs, rump and lower abdomen dark orange. Formerly endemic on Norfolk Island and the adjacent Phillip Island

Rocks and trees
Chatham kaka

(Nestor sp.)
Extinct by 1550–1700

Appearance unknown, but bones indicate reduced flight capability. Only known from subfossil bones. Formerly endemic on Chatham Island of New Zealand


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See also

Kids robot.svg In Spanish: Nestor (género) para niños

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