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Ko'ko' by Nambroth Ko'ko' by Nambroth
Guam Rail
Extinct in the Wild

Guam Rails is a species endemic to Guam. Before the 1960s, they were very abundant on the island and populations are estimated to be over 70,000. Sadly, this changed abruptly after people introduced the brown tree snake to the island. The rails, being flightless and having evolved no defenses to this previously unknown (to them) predator, were wiped out by the snake, and (later) introduced domestic housecats. By 1981 the population had dropped to around 2,000... and by 1987 it was considered extinct in the wild.

Today, there are only about 300 of these birds left, most living in captivity on Guam where they are trying to breed them, and most of the others in zoos and a few other breeding programs.

This piece was painted for :iconlosingaltitude:, a book project highlighting birds that are threatened or endangered.

Additionally, I am selling prints of this image to benefit the Ko'Ko' project ( kokoforcocos.net )-- I have contacted them and hope to hear back on how I may donate. If they do not accept donations and no other Guam-specific charity can be sourced, I'll instead send the proceeds to a similar charity such as the Peregrine Fund or the World Parrot Trust.
Prints: featherdust.storenvy.com/produ…

This was painted in Corel Painter, using the acrylic brush tool and some oils in the background.

More information on these birds: www.birdlife.org/datazone/spec…
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:iconwagmorebarkless:
WagmoreBarkless Featured By Owner Feb 6, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
Beautiful painting; very sad but informative history!
Reply
:iconsnowwhirls:
SnowWhirls Featured By Owner Jun 28, 2014
Beautiful! :clap:
Reply
:iconnickel8:
nickel8 Featured By Owner Jun 9, 2014  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Cool rare bird.
Reply
:iconbrainybase:
brainybase Featured By Owner Feb 28, 2014  Student Digital Artist
:O I thought this was a photograph at first!
Reply
:iconcillana:
Cillana Featured By Owner Jan 16, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
Amazing work!
Reply
:iconbarackobamasaurus:
Barackobamasaurus Featured By Owner Jan 6, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
Superbly painted.
Reply
:iconmarcoornithodira:
marcoornithodira Featured By Owner Jan 5, 2014  Student Traditional Artist
Perfect.
Reply
:iconsilkenwinds:
SilkenWinds Featured By Owner Jan 2, 2014  Hobbyist Photographer
Gorgeous lighting on this!!
Reply
:iconmetal1784:
Metal1784 Featured By Owner Dec 22, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
This is amazing! :heart:
Reply
:icondagaizm:
DAGAIZM Featured By Owner Dec 17, 2013
very nice light,gives impression of depth...
I thought that it was a kivi bird...
Reply
:iconalomhordozo57:
alomhordozo57 Featured By Owner Nov 30, 2013
Wonderful!
Reply
:iconhappymoyeah:
HappyMoyeah Featured By Owner Nov 22, 2013
Wow ! Amazing . I'm impressed by the quality of your drawings ans inspired to keep on working and improving.
Reply
:iconravenslore:
RavensLore Featured By Owner Oct 30, 2013  Professional Digital Artist
I saw a bird like that once when I was hiking in New Zealand.  It came right up to me.  It wasn't afraid at all.
Reply
:iconred-rose-12:
Red-Rose-12 Featured By Owner Sep 24, 2013
whoa fantastic! 
Reply
:iconbonefish:
bonefish Featured By Owner Sep 21, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
I'm struck by how well you rendered the layering of the feathers, especially on the underbelly where the black-and-white bars indicate the feather alignment. Gorgeous details!
Reply
:iconalradeck:
ALRadeck Featured By Owner Sep 19, 2013  Professional Digital Artist
Your rendering is absolutely fantastic on this, well done!
Reply
:iconamandadrage:
AmandaDrage Featured By Owner Sep 19, 2013
Fabulous. This is going to be one hell of a book! I'm glad I reserved one.
Reply
:iconshanghaisarah:
ShanghaiSarah Featured By Owner Sep 15, 2013
Very beautiful work!
Reply
:iconskye-oathkeeper:
Skye-oathkeeper Featured By Owner Sep 15, 2013  Student
So beautiful!
Reply
:iconherofan135:
herofan135 Featured By Owner Sep 15, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Such an amazing bird, I do hope the breeding programs will be successful. :wow:
Do you think they will be able to eradicate the foreign species in the same manner that have been done on a few offshore islands of New zeeland in order to save the kiwi?
Reply
:iconcitycreek:
Citycreek Featured By Owner Sep 15, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
*Cough*

HOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOW?
Reply
:iconkatarjana:
Katarjana Featured By Owner Sep 12, 2013  Student General Artist
I definitely thought that this was a photo from the thumbnail! The lighting is spot on!
Reply
:iconimke14:
imke14 Featured By Owner Sep 12, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Amazing detail and lighting. :D
Reply
:iconcitizenolek:
CitizenOlek Featured By Owner Sep 11, 2013
Lovely quality of light you've achieved with this digital piece.
:thumbsup:
Reply
:iconisaiahparker:
IsaiahParker Featured By Owner Sep 11, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Magnificent!
Reply
:iconmoon647:
Moon647 Featured By Owner Sep 11, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
im gonna join the others cause i think it looks soo real o.o awesome job!
Reply
:icondarkraynerules:
DarkRayneRules Featured By Owner Sep 11, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Nice work. You really nailed the feathers & markings. I thought it was a photo.

We have Rails here in Australia. Got a couple of pairs around the yard. They're cute little birds. They run super fast & at times open up their wings & glide. They've got it tough though since the neighbours started baby-sitting this pure evil Shar Pei dog. It's completely loose & acts like it owns the place. The pooping is bad enough, but it stalks & growls at you. It ate a whole clutch of ducklings straight from a pond in our front paddock. One pair of Rail's had a chick & it went missing. I just wish people would keep their dogs contained. I'm so sick of getting harassed by free range dogs on my own property. Cats are an issue too, but at least they don't confront you. A cat won't run up your driveway & meow & hiss at you. lol.
Reply
:iconkevinpreston:
KevinPreston Featured By Owner Sep 11, 2013
I thought it was a photo too! This is incredible!
Reply
:iconslipping-star:
Slipping-Star Featured By Owner Sep 10, 2013  Student Traditional Artist
Dang, almost thought it was real!
Reply
:iconnekonotaishou:
nekonotaishou Featured By Owner Sep 10, 2013  Student Filmographer
I thought this was a photograph when I saw it in my inbox :iconotlplz:
Reply
:iconmisted-dream:
Misted-Dream Featured By Owner Sep 10, 2013  Professional Traditional Artist
Wow, gorgeous work! I'm absolutely in love with the lighting in this. :D
Reply
:iconmensjedezeemeermin:
MensjeDeZeemeermin Featured By Owner Sep 10, 2013
A beautiful photograph of a beautiful bird--I can see why they're trying to save it.
Reply
:iconnambroth:
Nambroth Featured By Owner Sep 10, 2013  Professional General Artist
This is a painting. :) Thank you!
Reply
:iconmensjedezeemeermin:
MensjeDeZeemeermin Featured By Owner Sep 10, 2013
This is a very good painting.
Reply
:iconasktz:
ASKTZ Featured By Owner Sep 10, 2013   General Artist
Wow, I thought this was a photograph ahha, great art work (: 
Reply
:iconxylothor:
Xylothor Featured By Owner Sep 10, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
Aww, cute ^^
Reply
:iconteavian:
Teavian Featured By Owner Sep 10, 2013   Digital Artist
Amazing work! I truly hope the Ko'ko' makes a good recovery.
Reply
:iconhappybeejrr:
HappybeeJrr Featured By Owner Sep 10, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
woah, that's way cool xD 
I really like the colors on the rail, but I think I like the Okinawa Rail better, because of the red, hnmm xP 
good job by the way! 
Reply
:iconmecengineer:
mecengineer Featured By Owner Sep 10, 2013
wonderful
Reply
:iconbioimagen:
bioimagen Featured By Owner Sep 10, 2013
Very good. 
I just to add, work a little more on its feet and toes. Mainly that one on groud. Soil too could need more work.
Best wishes
Reply
:iconaashleyb:
aAshleyB Featured By Owner Sep 10, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
Wow -- looks so real!
Reply
:iconbailiwick:
Bailiwick Featured By Owner Sep 10, 2013
Someday, it would be totally cool if you did a book of extinct or endangered birds, Nam. Wowza, this is so beautiful, everything you make has such a lifelike expression. Totally fantastic! <3
Reply
:iconmadizzlee:
madizzlee Featured By Owner Sep 10, 2013   General Artist
It's for such a nice cause! I think it's beautiful and that the reason you're doing it is great too. 

Clap
 
Reply
:iconebalance:
Ebalance Featured By Owner Sep 10, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
AWESOME!!! 
Reply
:iconinthenow2:
Inthenow2 Featured By Owner Sep 10, 2013  Professional Photographer
THIS IS A PAINTING?!?! I thought it was a photo! Amazing work!
Reply
:icongypsyvannerstallion:
Gypsyvannerstallion Featured By Owner Sep 10, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
This is so absolutely, positively amazing!  As with all of your work, I'm completely blown away with the detail on this picture!
Reply
:icongrolarbearcatfishes:
GrolarBearCatfishes Featured By Owner Sep 10, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
My goodness, your work never ceases to amaze me.
Reply
:iconatriaka:
Atriaka Featured By Owner Sep 10, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
Wow! I thought this was a photo! Stunning painting
Reply
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September 10, 2013
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