Baby parrot rejected by mom called ugliest bird in the world

April 18, 2012 at 1:43 PM ET /
Mirror, mirror, will Nelson grow up to be the fairest parrot of them all?

This little guy hasn't broken the mirror quite yet, despite being called a contender for world’s ugliest bird by The Daily Mail. The baby Kea parrot, named Nelson, spent his first month of life in an incubator at the Bergzoo in Germany after being rejected by his parents. He was the only parrot to survive and hatch out of the three eggs lain by his mother, although it appears that wasn’t enough to stir any maternal instincts in the older bird. /
Are you talking to me? Nelson has been called a contender for ugliest bird in the world at only a month old! /
This parrot chick calls to mind the phrase 'beauty is in the eye of the beholder!'

Now Nelson is being cared for round the clock by zoo staff and despite his baby looks, he does have something to look forward to. Kea parrots grow up to have olive-green feathers with a beautiful orange flash under their wings. They’re also known for their intelligence, so be careful what you say about little Nelson now because he just may remember and come back in full bloom to show you how wrong you were. /
This adult Kea parrot is an example of what Nelson might look like when he grows up! Like the ugly duckling, he may not be beautiful now but he may outshine everyone when he's older.

So while he's been described as a cross between a roast chicken and an alien, I think this tiny bird has a unique cuteness (even if no one here in the office agrees with me!) What do you think about Nelson? Ugliest bird in the world or a distinctive cutey? Tell us in the poll below.




Lisa Granshaw is a writer and producer for She thinks Nelson is an adorable little thing that will prove all his critics wrong when he's older.