Te Papa’s curator of terrestrial vertebrates Dr Colin Miskelly is researching the life and work of the Canterbury naturalist Edgar Stead (1881-1949). This includes re-taking Stead’s photos from the same photo-point, taking other images to illustrate his diaries, and describing how the ecology and wildlife of each of 10 islands has changed since Stead’s visits…. Read more »
Posts categorized as Birds
The Te Papa Store has just taken possession of a range of new stock inspired by the museum’s natural history collection. Dead Set is by textile designer Genevieve Packer, and is based on Te Papa’s haunting and strange collection of bird skins. For the novice, of which I am in the case of natural history, bird skins are… Read more »
A number of biological specimens in Te Papa’s collection, particularly old specimens, lack information about when and where they were collected. This information may have been lost since the specimen was collected or was simply not recorded at the time. However, all is not lost! Sometimes we can use DNA to determine where a specimen… Read more »
Dr Lara Shepherd, who’s been working with us on genetics research since January 2012 has just been awarded a prestigious Rutherford Fellowship. Only 10 fellowships are awarded each year, with a total of $8 m granted. The fellowships are awarded on the basis of the excellence of the candidates work as well as the research… Read more »
Te Papa scientists Dr Susan Waugh and Dr Lara Shepherd recently completed a study of foraging movements of Westland Petrels. The birds were studied in 2 years and during 3 parts of the breeding season (pre-breeding, incubation and chick-rearing). This gave great insights into which ocean areas the birds are using, and where they concentrate… Read more »
In the recent death of Don Binney New Zealand art has lost a major contributor to its diverse tradition of landscape painting. Binney began painting his stylized images of birds in the landscape in the early 1960s. These unique and startling images quickly established his reputation. The ‘oversized’ birds combined a personal take on hard-edged… Read more »
We are saddened to hear that contemporary New Zealand artist Don Binney has passed away. Our thoughts are with Don’s family and friends.
Little spotted kiwi only occur in New Zealand, where there are around 1500 individuals remaining. They are the smallest kiwi species, about the size of a bantam hen, and are very susceptible to predation by introduced mammals, such as stoats and dogs. Today they survive on predator-free offshore islands and the fenced mainland sanctuary Zealandia… Read more »
Over the next month, Te Papa is working with the community of enthusiasts and researchers on seabirds – albatrosses and petrels in particular – to showcase the unique work of this group, and to allow a glimpse of the beauty, vulnerability, and amazing adaptations of these birds and unique environments they inhabit. Our focus on… Read more »
Here are a few, token animal photos to finish this account of our fieldwork. Other blog posts about our West Coast fern fieldwork cover: What we were doing. Where we went. Sticherus (umbrella ferns). New, problematic, and interesting species. Favourite photos.