Posts categorized as Disasters

What bird is that? The grim task of identifying seabirds killed by the M.V. Rena oil spill

  • Cause and effect. Dead Buller's shearwaters spell the name of the Rena, with 2 northern giant petrels to the left, and rows of fluttering shearwaters and diving petrels above. Photo: Colin Miskelly, Te Papa
  • Karen and Lucy with oiled seabirds inside the pathology tent. Photo: Colin Miskelly, Te Papa
  • Colin Miskelly (Te Papa's Curator Terrestrial Vertebrates) with a heavily olied northern giant petrel. Photo: Colin Miskelly, Te Papa
  • Fluttering shearwaters coated in oil from the M.V. Rena. Photo: Colin Miskelly, Te Papa

Te Papa bird staff are providing expert assistance to Maritime New Zealand and Massey University veterinary staff in the form of identifying birds affected by the oil spill. Three current and one former staff member have been a ‘tag team’ since 12 October, identifying the hundreds of corpses recovered by the teams patrolling the beaches,… Read more »

Bay of Plenty oilspill – Potential for impacts on seabird populations

New Zealand marine areas are home to a wide variety of wildlife, with many unique and threatened species inhabiting our waters. New Zealand’s title as World Seabird Capital is unchallenged, with 1/3 of the worlds’ 346 species present in the New Zealand Exclusive Economic Zone, including ½ of the 22 albatross species of the world. A… Read more »

Auction for Christchurch now on

The auction is up and running! Te Papa Picture Library and the Brian Brake Estate, with the support of Image Lab and Trade Me have organised an online charity auction to raise funds for the Red Cross Canterbury Earthquake Appeal Fund Twelve Brian Brake gallery-quality prints will be auctioned starting 5 September, 2011 and closing… Read more »

Canterbury Earthquake anniversary: send us your photos

  • From: http://www.fourhundredthousandstories.com/
  • Still from Love in a Little Town
  • From: http://www.fourhundredthousandstories.com/
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“Your humanity is more powerful than any act of nature.” – John Key On 4 September a year will have passed since the first large earthquake rocked Canterbury and the nation. To mark this event and the significant effect it has had on New Zealanders’ lives we would like to invite you to contribute photos and films to OurSpace that reflect… Read more »

Riders of the storm – thousands of seabirds perish on New Zealand shores

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  • Fig. 7. The calm before the storm – healthy broad-billed prions on Kundy Island, off Stewart Island, March 2011. Photo: Colin Miskelly
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  • Fig. 5. Beach-wrecked broad-billed prions, Paekakariki (Wellington west coast), 16 July 2011. Photo: Colin Miskelly

It started as a trickle and soon developed into a flood of devastating proportions. On 11 July 2011 I received an email enquiry from a family at Waikanae seeking help with identifying an unusual seabird that they had found dead on their driveway. It was a Salvin’s prion, a not-too-unexpected discovery near the coast during… Read more »

Earthquake update from Dr Hamish Campbell, GNS

Kia ora kotou Dr Hamish Campell has just sent through an article he has written for the NZ Herald. The text is reproduced in full below. Hamish is Senior Scientist at GNS Science and is Te Papa’s geological advisor. Bill Fry, GNS Science Seismologist, also explains Tuesday’s catastrophic events in this excellent video. “The 22 February… Read more »

Christchurch earthquake

Our deepest sympathies go out to everyone in Christchurch. Many of our staff here have families and whanau down there – we’re thinking of you all, and hoping for good news. I’ve been in touch with our expert Dr Hamish Campbell at GNS. Although he’s at the thick of things, he did dash off this… Read more »