News of New Zealanders via Global Media

Hawaiian Hunt

Hawaiian Hunt

New Zealand hunting specialist Prohunt has been hired by The Nature Conservancy of Hawaii to help stem the destruction of the island’s native forest by marauding wild pigs and goats. Prohunt is conducting research…

Antarctic Oddities

Antarctic Oddities

New Zealand scientists were part of a 50-day “voyage of discovery” through the Ross Sea recently, coming face-to-face with some truly odd creatures. The marine life encountered during the 2,000-mile voyage included, jellyfish with…

Kiwi Hatched in US

Kiwi Hatched in US

Washington DC’s Smithsonian National Zoo has successfully hatched a rare North Island Brown kiwi, their third since 1975. The Smithsonian is one of only four zoos outside New Zealand to successfully breed the…

Leap for Frogkind

Leap for Frogkind

Thirteen tiny, and extremely rare, Maud Island froglets have been spotted at Wellington’s Karori Wildlife Sanctuary hitching a ride on the back of a fully grown male. Researcher Kerri Lukis said the frogs have…

Godwits Fly

Godwits Fly

Every year, godwits fly from Alaska to New Zealand in an astonishing six days. A Seattle-based husband and wife team have been following the migratory patterns of the tiny bird and write about their…

Bridging the Gap

Bridging the Gap

On New Zealand’s Chatham Islands researchers have discovered the country’s oldest known bird fossils. The find  represents four new seabirds dating back some 65 million years when New Zealand separated from supercontinent, Gondwana. Excavation…

Power in Numbers

Power in Numbers

The New York Times reports on a multi-organisation effort to save NZ’s national symbol from extinction. Founded in 1994, Operation Nest Egg is a combined effort by the Department of Conservation’s Kiwi Recovery Program, non-profit group Save…

NZ Commits to Climate Change Cause

NZ Commits to Climate Change Cause

NZ will introduce a carbon trading scheme next year in a bid to cap greenhouse gas emissions at the lowest possible cost to the economy. Under the plan, every industry will be allocated an agreed level…

Guilt-free Fur

Guilt-free Fur

NZ possum fur features in a Guardian article on “weird and wonderful” examples of eco-friendly products. Imported from Australia in 1837, possums have been wreaking havoc on NZ’s native flora and fauna ever since. “We support killing…

Incredible Journey

Incredible Journey

The NZ bar-tailed godwit is officially the migratory champion of the avian world. The bird has been tracked from its summertime home in NZ to its breeding ground in Alaska, and back again, by…

Green Choice for NZ Motorists

Green Choice for NZ Motorists

NZ has launched its first commercial biofuel – Gull Force 10. Available through Gull Petroleum stations, the “green” fuel blends 90 per cent premium gasoline with 10 per cent bioethanol made from cows’ milk. “We are serious…

Incredible Journey Revealed

Incredible Journey Revealed

Massey University ecologists are conducting a groundbreaking study of the bar-tailed godwit’s northern migration. While the 11,000 km southern migration of the godwit from Alaska to NZ is thought to be the longest non-stop flight by any…

Monster Haul

Monster Haul

A NZ fishing crew has caught an adult colossal squid, one of the world’s most aggressive and mysterious predators. The 450kg monster, with eyes the size of dinner plates and razor-sharp hooks on its tentacles, is the…

NZ Scientists Solve Pigeon Puzzle

NZ Scientists Solve Pigeon Puzzle

Scientists at Auckland University have solved the enduring mystery of homing pigeons. “We are now confident that pigeons … use the intensity of the Earth’s magnetic field to determine position during homing,” said Dr Todd Dennis, who…

Silver Lining to Climate Change Cloud

Silver Lining to Climate Change Cloud

NZ has the potential to adapt to climate change more effectively than its neighbours, according to the government and global warming experts. Despite being home to just 0.06 per cent of the world’s population, NZ produces 0.2…

Wellington’s Conservation Crusader

Wellington’s Conservation Crusader

Pioneering research by Victoria University conservation biologist Wayne Linklater could save the endangered black rhino from extinction. Like many threatened species, the captive black rhino population suffers from a potentially disastrous gender imbalance. Linklater attributes the extreme male-biased…

Let Them Wear Possum

Let Them Wear Possum

The Independent reports on NZ’s thriving (and environmentally kosher) possum fur trade. “Elsewhere, designers who work with fur earn the wrath of animal rights activists. But in New Zealand, they are considered national heroes.” Imported from Australia…

Defender of Oceans

Defender of Oceans

A Guardian article on the uncertain future of wild fish stocks features long-time Rainbow Warrior photographer and marine biologist Dr Roger Grace. Grace as been documenting Greenpeace actions for over 30 years and is…

Prime Coverage at Chelsea

Prime Coverage at Chelsea

The 100% NZ Garden won a silver medal at the gardening world’s most prestigious annual event – the Chelsea Garden Show. The garden was inspired by the West Coast of Auckland, and features a black sand beach…

Best Western

Best Western

Leading US travel site, Frommer’s, featured a lengthy write-up on the South Island’s spectacular west coast – “where there’s more to see and do than there are residents.” The writer’s comprehensive holiday includes a…

Up the Nile in 80 Days

Up the Nile in 80 Days

Two New Zealanders and a Briton have redrawn the map of Africa by following the Nile River to its true source – something no explorer in history has managed before. Lake Victoria was generally believed to…

Little Snail vs. Big Business

Little Snail vs. Big Business

NZ environmental groups are at war with Solid Energy over the power company’s intention to mine the only known habitat of the endangered brown snail, Powelliphanta Augustus. The entire snail population, believed to total just 800-1000, is…

Simple Pleasures in Spectacular Surrounds

Simple Pleasures in Spectacular Surrounds

Stewart Island is now home to NZ’s 14th national park – Rakiura, named after the anchor stone of Maui’s canoe (the South Island). A Toronto Star writer visited the rugged outpost and was won over by…

Blast From the Past

Blast From the Past

Ornithologists the world over have been fascinated by recent confirmed sightings of the NZ Storm Petrel, which was thought to have been extinct for more than a century. In November 2005 a NZ fisherman took the…

Karate vs. Kea

Karate vs. Kea

Organisers of a vintage car rally near Mt Cook took an unusual defensive stance against marauding local kea, which are notorious for damaging cars in alpine areas. The car club hired 40 karate practitioners to protect…

Environmental No.1

Environmental No.1

NZ leads the world in environmental performance according to the Pilot 2006 Environmental Performance Index (EPI) released at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. Researchers at Yale and Columbia Universities measured how close 133 countries came…

Aoraki Off Limits?

Aoraki Off Limits?

Mt Cook (Aoraki) has provided yet another example of the effects of global warming, with local guides warning that visitors may no longer be able to climb its famed heights. “We had a very lean winter…

World’s Rarest Given Kiwi Name

World’s Rarest Given Kiwi Name

A grove of one of the world’s rarest trees has been named after NZ plant conservation scientist David Given. The Wollemi Pine, believed to be extinct until re-discovered in Australia’s Blue Mountains in 1994, is a…

Rann – Global Warming “Frightening”

Rann – Global Warming “Frightening”

Mike Rann, the Auckland University-educated and former NZBC journalist and now, Labor Premier of South Australia, writes in The Australian that “the world should make no mistake: in 2005, global warming is a real…

Reaching New Lows

Reaching New Lows

A NZ ship has set a new world record for the southern-most point attained by water. The Spirit of Enderby, a polar research ship exploring NZ and Australia’s sub-Antarctic islands, reached a latitude of 78deg 40min and…

The Real Big Bird

The Real Big Bird

Joint research by Oxford (UK) and Canterbury (NZ) Universities has uncovered startling new facts about NZ’s native Haast’s eagle. With a weight of 10kg, the Haast’s eagle was 30-40% heavier than the largest living bird of…

Poles Apart, Like Minded

Poles Apart, Like Minded

The NZ and Austrian governments have formally agreed to cooperate on the implementation of emission reduction projects, in accordance with the Kyoto Protocol. “NZ’s pro-active, pro-business approach to climate change is good news for the economy and…

Leader of the Pack

Leader of the Pack

Dunedin based production company, National History New Zealand, won two major awards at this year’s Beijing International Science Film Festival. The World’s Biggest Baddest Bugs and Spider Power took gold and silver respectively in the Nature and Environment…

Moa, Moa and More Moa

Moa, Moa and More Moa

New scientific evidence reveals that humans may not be entirely responsible for the extinction of the moa. According to research undertaken in NZ and the US, there were 3 to 12 million moa roaming the forests…

Tourist Hot Spot Gets Edged

Tourist Hot Spot Gets Edged

NZ’s Marine Tourism Holdings is the latest company to set up shop at Queensland’s Great Barrier Reef, offering daily tours to a 45m pontoon based at Knuckle Reef. The pontoon, which houses an interpretive centre and a…

National Treasure in Good Hands

National Treasure in Good Hands

China Daily features the Kiwi Recovery Programme, a government sponsored initiative to save the national icon from extinction. “NZ has a history of making refuges for wildlife … saying, these things are in trouble, we’ll scatter them…

Lives on the Edge

Lives on the Edge

National Geographic report details NZ’s world-leading conservation programmes, set up to preserve and protect our “virtual Noah’s Ark of bizarre animals.” NZ is considered a pioneering force in the establishment of animal sanctuaries, with 198 translocation projects involving…

Flax Attack

Flax Attack

After a brief 1960s hey-day, NZ flax (phormium) has returned as “the drama queen of trendy garden designs” in LA. According to TV horticulturist Maureen Gilmer, “Phormiums are the most exciting new plants to enter the American…

DOC Plays Tag

DOC Plays Tag

NZ’s Department of Conservation plans to use state-of-the-art satellite tagging in its fight to save the Maui’s Dolphin, whose numbers have plummeted to less than 150. The tags will help researchers better understand the dolphins’ territorial range…

Edge Eco-system

Edge Eco-system

19 February 2004 – The unique bird-life native to NZ and its surrounding islands is the subject of major articles in The Japan Times and The New York Times. The first, by a Japan-based natural historian,…

Mother of Invention

Mother of Invention

Age feature charts former Thompson Twin Alannah Currie’s career trajectory from 80s popstar to the face of MadGE (Mothers Against Genetic Engineering) – NZ’s most visible opponent of genetically modified crops. Currie is credited with making the…

An Ill Wind That Blows Some Good?

An Ill Wind That Blows Some Good?

“Wise environmental husbandry or flatulent political correctness? An ill wind or a fair wind?” Financial Times takes a tongue-in-cheek look at the proposed ‘fart tax’ to be levied on NZ dairy and sheep farmers. Methane produced by…

Eco-friendlier Fuel

Eco-friendlier Fuel

NZ cars may soon be running on a petrol blend containing 10% ethanol – a by-product of the country’s dairy industry. The move is being welcomed in both environmental and agricultural sectors, and has already gained the…

Burning Down the House?

Burning Down the House?

NZ’s early prosperity was said to have been borne on the sheep’s back – now they’re threatening to power us into the 21st Century: NZ’s Energy Efficiency and Conservation Authority has hit upon a novel way of powering…

One Up for Moby

One Up for Moby

A landmark decision by the International Whaling Commission in Berlin is being hailed as a step in the right direction by “what was once a whaler’s club.” The ‘Berlin Initiative’ – proposed by 19 countries including NZ…

Rats Have Rights Too

Rats Have Rights Too

Native rats (kiore) on Little Barrier Island were saved from a scheduled DOC extermination by local tribe Ngatiwai, who claimed them as taonga. The rats, now almost extinct on mainland NZ, pose a threat to tuatara…

Evolutionary Edge

Evolutionary Edge

Soil-analysis undertaken in a NZ cave has uncovered a rich and previously unknown evolutionary heritage. A team of scientists have found DNA traces of an extinct animal and from plants alive 3,000 years before the first human…

Napier Goes Ga-ga for Gingko

Napier Goes Ga-ga for Gingko

Ron Massey, of Napier Council, thinks the city’s onto an export winner after its successful growing of high-grade gingko trees. The Chinese herb is currently the trendiest pill to pop, supposedly offering dramatically increased energy and cognitive…

Sir Ed on “Knocking the Bastard Off”

Sir Ed on “Knocking the Bastard Off”

The Guardian interviews Sir Edmund Hillary in the lead up to the 50th anniversary of his Mt Everest ascent. “He talks about his experiences with the bluff modesty of a Boys’ Own adventure hero Perhaps…

An End to Sheep Jokes?

An End to Sheep Jokes?

NZ’s sheep population is at an all-time low, plummeting from 70 million in 1982 to less than 40 million. Cows and fruit – particularly wine grapes – have gradually replaced the woolly icons as more lucrative…

Antarctic Tribute

Antarctic Tribute

A NZ foundation dedicated to the preservation of early Antarctic exploration is to erect a unique memorial museum to Norwegian explorer Carsten E. Borchgrevink. The UN-backed Global Resource Information Database (GRID) wants to preserve Borchgrevink’s cabin -…

Leading the field

Leading the field

“Never before has technology played such a pivotal role in bringing an animal back from the brink, setting the stage for computer-based rescues of endangered species elsewhere.” SMH feature documents the radical efforts of NZ scientists and conservationists…

Environmental Oxymoron

Environmental Oxymoron

NZ’s possum epidemic has made unlikely bed-fellows of environmentalists and fur-trappers. New Scientist looks at a globally unique situation, where groups such as WWF actively support the trapping of an animal for its fur and meat as…

Cleaner Greener NZ

Cleaner Greener NZ

The Kyoto Protocol on greenhouse gas emissions came one step closer to enforcement after its ratification by the NZ and Canadian governments. Although both countries are relatively minor industrial polluters their signatures are vital in making up the…

The Big Break-up

The Big Break-up

“Somewhere east of New Zealand, where Gondwana’s break-up may have started some 130 million years ago, with New Zealand splitting from Australia, ‘the last resources of mankind’ could be awaiting discovery. So say a crew of German…

Tweety 1, Sylvester 0

Tweety 1, Sylvester 0

” has built up something of a reputation for bringing endangered birds back from the brink of extinction,” the kakapo being a prime example. Armed with electric blankets, video monitoring equipment, and over 100 volunteer nest-minders, NZ…