NEWS


 

Lepidoptera at ZEALANDIA

ZEALANDIA Ecosanctuary

Around 100 years ago, eminent NZ entomologist George Vernon Hudson worked extensively in the Karori region to create a comprehensive list of moths and butterflies that could be found in the Wellington region.

Now, the Wellington Branch of the New Zealand Entomology Society have embarked on a whāinga/mission, in partnership with ZEALANDIA, to develop a current list of moths (Lepidoptera) in the northern end of the valley.

ZEALANDIA’s Centre for People and Nature taking shape

Kate Miller

Work is picking up steam in ZEALANDIA’s Centre for People and Nature, with around 80 people  national and internal research projects and collaborations now underway. 

Launched last year, the Centre leads and facilitates research on how to enhance the role of nature in cities. Researchers across areas of health and wellbeing, the science of nature, and connecting people and nature, are drawing on the ZEALANDIA sanctuary, the green heart and living laboratory of Wellington. 

Citizen Scientists help nurse Kaiwharawhara Stream back to health

ZEALANDIA Ecosanctuary

Wellington’s Kaiwharawhara Stream might be polluted now, but citizen scientists are helping restore it to health.  

In a recent survey of the stream’s estuary by Sustainable Coastlines, 2400 pieces of mostly plastic rubbish, were collected and analysed by volunteers. Coastal clean-ups, such as those coordinated by Sustainable Coastlines, have inspired the Kaiwharawhara Catchment Plastics Project, led by Dr Amanda Valois of NIWA. 

Native fish ‘hidden treasures’ in the Kaiwharawhara Stream

ZEALANDIA Ecosanctuary

Our native fish are among the hidden treasures of New Zealand’s animal life because they are seldom seen. Yet the Kaiwharawhara Stream catchment is known to have 13 species of fish out of the 21 in the Wellington Region. 

‘Sanctuary to Sea/Kia Mouriora te Kaiwharawhara’, a multi-stakeholder restoration project co-ordinated by ZEALANDIA staff, aims to improve fish habitats throughout this important catchment. Beginning within the ZEALANDIA sanctuary, the catchment is the largest in Wellington city, covering over 16 square kilometres.  

Wikipedian at large at ZEALANDIA

Vanya Bootham

Wikipedia is one of the most useful (and used) sites on the web.  What comes up first when you do a Google search? Yep – it’s usually a Wikipedia page.  More people use Wikipedia worldwide than any other reference resource on the web.

Unfortunately though, New Zealand’s wonderful native species are under-represented on Wikipedia. This means that many of our endangered species are not getting the attention they deserve.

Meet our Newest Arrivals

Kākahi / Freshwater Mussels

Louise Slocombe

You may not see very much of the newest arrivals in the valley, but they are being carefully monitored all the same.

Two hundred kākahi (New Zealand freshwater mussels) have just been translocated from Wairarapa Moana and the Parangarahu lakes to the Upper Lake with the help of iwi partners, Taranaki Whānui, Ngāti Kahungunu, and Rangitāne o Wairarapa. Two different kākahi  species were included in the translocation: Echyridella menziesi and Echyridella aucklandica.

New Zealand’s lizards: remembering a forgotten fauna

New Zealand: a land of birds?

Christopher Woolley

Aotearoa is well known as a land of birds. Some of the earliest observations of the country’s natural history were ornithological: Joseph Banks famously described being “awakd by the singing of the birds ashore” on his voyage aboard the HMS Endeavour (1768-1771). Ngā manu (birds) often appear in whakataukī (Māori proverbs). The phrase: “He Kotuku rerenga tahi/ A white heron flies once” is used to refer to an auspicious occasion. Birds are taonga and part of the ‘kiwi’ identity. They have become part of our national brand, standing for the uniqueness of our way of life and the fragility of our ecosystems, and we treasure them for it.

Kākahi are coming to ZEALANDIA!

Learn about this important ecological engineer

Dr Danielle Shanahan

ZEALANDIA is welcoming a new addition to the sanctuary - Kākahi (freshwater mussels) are being introduced to our upper lake for the first time!

While they don’t have feathers and eyes, we are REALLY excited. The two species of kākahi are considered as ‘At Risk – Declining’ by the Department of Conservation—and they have a very important role as an ‘ecosystem engineer’ in our waterways. They can help keep lakes clean and healthy.

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