Photo Exhibition showcases student research - Lara Urban

The current exhibition in the Gallery, Photos from the Field, was curated by student Hogai Aryoubi (PhD, Education) and features Wolfson postdoctoral students’ fieldwork. We are reproducing each students' work here, this selection is from Lara Urban, who has just finished her PhD in Genetics, Using genomics research to bring the critically endangered kākāpō parrot back from the brink of extinction.

Photo exhibition in the Gallery

Photo 1: Lara holds thekākāpō Gulliver for a health check. All of the 142 adult kākāpō that are alive today are monitored closely to ensure the survival of the species. 

Kakapo gulliver

Photo 2: Travelling with style. The island Whenua Hou in Southern New Zealand, where most remaining kākāpō have been brought to save them from predators, only has one possible landing field: The magnificent beach. 

beach in New Zealand

Photo 3: Semen is collected from a male kākāpō to be used for artificial insemination. As the rangers know about the relatedness of individual kākāpō due to genomics research, artificial insemination helps prevent inbreeding and deleterious fitness consequences for the species. 

collecting kakapo semen

Photo 4: Eggs are incubated directly on the island to be monitored closely by hardworking rangers. Each hatched chick represents new hope for the critically endangered species. 

kakapo eggs


Lara is very grateful that the Kākāpō Recovery team from the New Zealand Department of Conservation has enabled this work. Please consider supporting this wonderful project.