Bats have become New Zealand’s bird of the year

One of New Zealand’s three wild mammals, a rare species of bat, has won the country’s Bird of the Year competition, MTI writes. New Zealand long-tailed bat (Chalinolobus tuberculatus), named Pekapeka-touroo as a Maori, to indicate the status of the species as endangered.

The news of the mammal’s inclusion received serious attention, achieving a record turnout of 56,733 votes.

In the vote, which runs through October 31, the flying mammal received 7,031 votes, while the runner-up, last year’s winner, received just 4,072 votes.

Ashley Cooper / Getty Images clarification.

Many were outraged that for the first time in this year’s avian breed history, a mammal was released. However, Forrest & Bird, the organizer of the vote, noted that the term in the Maori name for tender (Te Manu Rongunoi or Te Tau), manu, actually refers not only to birds but to many other flying creatures, including bats. In addition, the main purpose of the competition is to draw attention to the dangers inherent in New Zealand’s famous species. I am ParisOverall, the scandal came out so good, said the conservation expert from Auckland Council, that many locals don’t even know the species even exists yet.

Debates and scandals are no stranger to the New Zealand race, with last year’s vote being overshadowed, for example, by the fact that 1,500 bogus votes were cast in favor of the little spotted kiwi. In 2019, Russia was accused of meddling in the vote after receiving a suspicious number of hundreds of votes from Russia.

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