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“Strange, colorful neck rug vomiting bird” wins New Zealand bird poll thanks to US talk show host John Oliver’s campaign |  Best thing on the internet

“Strange, colorful neck rug vomiting bird” wins New Zealand bird poll thanks to US talk show host John Oliver’s campaign | Best thing on the internet

The organization behind the election, Forest & Bird, celebrates its centenary this year, so pūteketeke is also the ‘Bird of the Century’. Bird received 290,374 votes, leaving numbers two and three behind, North Island Kiwi (12,904 votes) and Kia (12,060 votes).

Oliver wanted to win the election in “historic fashion” and launched a “shockingly aggressive” ‘Lord of the Wings’ election campaign that clearly paid off. He put up meter-high billboards in New Zealand, Japan, France, India and the US state of Wisconsin, campaigned in Great Britain and flew a plane advertising pūteketeke over the beaches of Rio de Janeiro in Brazil. He campaigned for pūteketeke on Jimmy Fallon’s ‘The Tonight Show’.

Meanwhile, campaign managers for the other 74 nominated birds – including the kiwi – haven’t let it go. With a wink they called on the New Zealand public to “resist American intervention” and above all to vote for their birds. In response to perceived “American interference” in Bird elections, New Zealanders voted overwhelmingly.

The contest drew more than 350,000 verified votes from 195 countries, causing the verification system to malfunction and voting results to be delayed for two days. “We promised controversy, but didn’t expect it. We’re delighted to see the interest, creativity and debate this campaign has sparked,” said Nicola Docchi, CEO of competition organizer Forest & Bird.

Doki also announced that thousands of votes, including 40,000 votes cast by one person per penguin, should be invalidated due to fraud.

Following the news of Oliver’s pūteketeke competition win, New Zealand’s recently elected Prime Minister X took to social media to congratulate him.

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