Air New Zealand has promoted its ecological credentials with a new safety video that tells the story of a young girl who transports a flightless bird to a new home.
The tale mirrors a real-life program the airline runs in conjunction with the Department of Conservation to move more than 3,200 threatened species to safe havens.
It comes the same week as Qantas unveiled its extravagant safety film celebrating its centenary, and follows a global trend of airlines investing to improve the previously dry messages.
The production features a young girl who transports a lost takahē, a species native to New Zealand, to a new home.
New Zealand’s lush landscapes feature in the video, with the Murchison Mountains in Fiordland, Tiritiri Matangi in the Hauraki Gulf and Sanctuary Mountain Maungatautari in Waikato all making an appearance.
The Department of Conservation has been working with the national carrier since 2012 to fund pest traps across 38,000 hectares of the country and support marine science and research into the country’s marine reserves.
Jodi Williams, the head of Air New Zealand’s content marketing, said, “While it’s lighthearted on the surface, it conveys a really important message – our native birds need our help. Our safety videos have collectively generated more than 180 million views over the past decade, so what better medium to shine a spotlight on New Zealand’s biodiversity crisis?
“We’re really proud of the work we’re doing with DOC, and hope Kiwis and visitors alike will not only delight in our latest video but take on the message behind it.”
Nicola Toki, a threatened species ambassador for the Department of Conservation, said, “The reality is, a huge number of our species are on the fast track to extinction. We’ve already lost 50 species of birds since humans arrived in New Zealand, and each year up to 25 million native birds are killed by introduced predators.
“Protecting our native taonga is a massive challenge. Still, one all Kiwis and businesses can be part of, by doing things like purchasing backyard traps and getting behind their local community groups.
“We’re thrilled to have been able to work with Air New Zealand on their latest safety video. Our native species are part of our identity as Kiwis, and it’s so important to protect that.”
Rising star Lily Roebuck is supported in the role of Janey by Nicola Toki; Department of Conservation ranger Jerry Henry-Finch; Air New Zealand crew members Danielle Griffioen, Henry McIntyre, Shelly Pretorius and Jordan Young; children of Air New Zealand employees; and a CGI takahē named Mr T.