We're pleased to say that our kākāpō patient Vori has returned to her sanctuary island home. As part of the transmitter changes for kākāpō that are carried out each year, Vori was noted by the Kākāpō Recovery rangers to have a moderate case of cloacitis – a inflammation of the cloaca which causes painful scabbing. While mild cases can be monitored on the island, the more severe cases are sent to our Vet Hospital for treatment.

So far this year, our vet team have treated seven kākāpō for this condition, including the three patients we’re continuing care for, Bunker, Bravo and Huarangi.  Our Auckland Zoo vet team continue to work with Kākāpō Recovery and multiple other researchers to understand the possible causes of this debilitating disease, with the ultimate goal of hopefully discovering an effective prevention.  In the meantime, we at least understand how to cure the affected birds, and this is all part of the ongoing veterinary support we provide to our conservation partners.

Vori and her sister Huarangi hatched during the bumper breeding season in 2019 and spent time at our Vet Hospital previously during the subsequent aspergillosis crisis.  Huarangi was unaffected, but Vori had aspergillosis (fungal pneumonia) which required many weeks of treatment before she was cured and could be returned to Whenua Hou. Our vet team say both sisters are lovely patients who are gentle and calm, and of the two, Huarangi is the more wilful and strongheaded sister.

While research is still ongoing into the cause of cloacitis, most importantly, we know the right steps to treat it. You can learn more about our veterinary team and the amazing work they do, here


Kākāpō Vori is released to her island home!

After spending time at our Vet Hospital receiving treatment for cloacitis, kākāpō Vori was able to return home with a clean bill of health. Video credit: DOC's Jake Osborne.