Parrot captures the moment it steals a family's GoPro from balcony

In-flight movie! Thieving parrot steals Go-Pro and films its soaring getaway before trying to eat the camera

  • Cheeky kea parrot steals GoPro and catches everything on camera
  • Verheul family, from New Zealand, were visiting the Fiordland National Park
  • Camera was tracked down after family listened out for loud bird calls 
  • This is the moment a thieving New Zealand parrot stole a family’s GoPro and recorded a bird’s eye view of its getaway. 

    The Verheuls, from Dunedin, had just finished their first day at the Fiordland National Park in the south west of the South Island, when they were joined by a group of feathered guests on the balcony of their hut.

    In an attempt to capture the moment forever, a GoPro was placed on the side to film the inquisitive bird.








    Footage from the GoPro show the bird flying off down a forest-covered hillside in Fiordland National Park, on New Zealand's South Island

    Footage from the GoPro show the bird flying off down a forest-covered hillside in Fiordland National Park, on New Zealand’s South Island

    A cheeky kea parrot was caught on camera stealing a New Zealand family's  GoPro

    The kea filmed itself with a part of the Go Pro camera in its beak after stealing the device

    A cheeky kea parrot was caught on camera stealing a New Zealand family’s  GoPro and later pecking at the device. Right, the bird filmed itself with a part of the camera in its beak

    Everything was going to plan until the alpine parrot, or kea – a species renowned for stealing from unsuspecting tourists – made a dash for it, running down the balcony ledge and snatching the camera before taking off before anyone could react. 

    The stunning footage shows the kea fly down a forest-covered hillside before landing and inspecting its stolen goods.  

    The bird pecks at the camera and is then filmed chewing a piece of the casing in its beak. 

    The case of the camera was left slightly worse for wear, but the GoPro remained intact and caught the whole getaway on video. 

    Luckily, the family managed to track the camera down after 13-year-old Luca followed the sound of loud bird calls.

    Luca’s father Alex Verheul shared the footage online on February 1. He told news outlet Seven Sharp: ‘We just followed the sound down there, we could see [the kea] hanging out in a tree – they’d obviously heard us coming and abandoned the GoPro – and my son decided to go check the rocks where it looked like a good place for a bird to land, and there it was still sitting there, still filming.’

    Luca Verheul, 13, managed to track the family's camera down after listening for loud bird calls

    Luca Verheul, 13, managed to track the family’s camera down after listening for loud bird calls

    He said he was shocked the incident was all captured on film and fellow trampers – also known as backpackers or hikers – at the hut loved seeing the footage.

    The cheeky theft wasn’t the only encounter the family had with the birds on their four-day trip.

    On the second day the keas stole some cups off their backpacks while they were out walking.  

    Despite the antics, Verheul said the tramp was a great experience, especially with the keas entertaining the family throughout.

    Luca's father Alex said he was shocked the incident was all captured on film, and fellow trampers - also known as hikers - at the hut loved seeing the footage

    Luca’s father Alex said he was shocked the incident was all captured on film, and fellow trampers – also known as hikers – at the hut loved seeing the footage

    The bird took the family's camera on the first day of their holiday at Fiordland National Park

    The bird took the family’s camera on the first day of their holiday at Fiordland National Park

    More than 118,000 people have have seen the video on YouTube, with Karl Rock commenting: ‘Please tell the story of how that little dude managed to track the bird and find the camera… amazing. Great vid.’

    While Marie-Pascale Desjardins added: ‘Respect for the kids that somehow managed to chase down this flying marvel.’

    Laura Manson said: ‘This is superb…Thank you for sharing it with all of us. I am so glad you found it too!!’

    The kea is an endangered species native to New Zealand.

    The bird is notorious in the country for its acrimonious relationship with humans and is known for attacking car windscreen wipers, rifling through tourists’ bags to steal wallets and even picking on sheep.

    Fewer than 7,000 of them live in the wilds of New Zealand, according to Canberra’s Department of Conservation.