Posts categorized as Science

Te Papa botanical research at Otari-Wilton’s Bush

Bench-Otari-Botanic-Garden

For many years, Te Papa botanists have included Otari-Wilton’s Bush collections in their research. Otari Native Botanic Garden and Wilton’s Bush Reserve is a special place in Wellington–“the only public botanic garden in New Zealand dedicated solely to native plants”. This makes it an important educational and research resource for the city’s inhabitants. Over two days… Read more »

Ko te whānau o Matariki: Matariki Education Resource 2015 – Part 1

Storyboard 2015, Photography: Te Papa, © Te Papa

During the coldest time each year the Matariki star cluster comes rising up for the first time in the eastern sky. This occurrence marks the beginning of an important time of year – the Māori New Year. This is a time for coming together with whānau (family) to think about the past year, plan for the future,… Read more »

Te Papa Botany researchers study genome size in hebes

Te Papa Botany researchers Heidi Meudt, Jessie Prebble and Phil Garnock-Jones have recently co-authored a new paper in the Botanical Journal of the Linnean Society on the genus Veronica, which includes northern speedwells and New Zealand and Australian hebes. This paper is the first major publication from Heidi’s research stay in Oldenburg, Germany as an Alexander von… Read more »

He huia tangata tahi – there is but one person synonymous with the huia, the chief

photo of kahu kiwi me003714

Ngā rau kura – Precious feathers In 2007 I identified the birds in Te Papa’s Māori cloaks using microscopic analyses of feather down and museum bird skin comparisons. My findings have provided a deeper knowledge of the museum’s natural history and Māori collections but also an appreciation and understanding of Māori bird use at the… Read more »

It’s a Bugs Life Education Project – Update from Imagine Childcare

Creating webs, Photographer: Imagine Childcare, © Te Papa

In 2015, Te Papa is creating a teacher resource to support you to ‘do science’ in your own backyard/outdoor environments – with a focus on the invertebrates who make these places home. It is very exciting to share our first update from one of the three Early Childhood Centres working with us! Thank you Adela, Kaiako (Teacher)… Read more »

South Island Botany Field Trip: weedy highlights

goat's beard, Tragopogon pratensis L., (SP103848). Collected 16 Dec 2014, New Zealand, Canterbury, West Coast Road. Image: Antony Kusabs, Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa.

In early December 2014, three Te Papa Botany Staff embarked on a 11 day field trip from Otago to North Canterbury.  We collected specimens, images and DNA samples of native forget-me-nots (Myosotis) and New Zealand hebes (Veronica). See the first blog in this series for more detail. Along the way, other native (and naturalised) species were also collected for Te… Read more »

South Island Botany Field Trip – Te Papa Botanists in Action!

  • Torlesse.Phil.photobyPhil
  • Broken River Ski Field 4WD photo by Phil
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  • 21Amuri Notothlaspi 4 Phil

In December 2014, three Te Papa Science Staff embarked on an 11 day field trip from Otago to North Canterbury.  Heidi Meudt – Botany Researcher, Phil Garnock-Jones – Botany Researcher and Antony Kusabs – Collection Manager Sciences collected specimens, images and DNA samples of native forget-me-nots (Myosotis) and New Zealand hebes (Veronica). 11 days, over 3000 km travelled and 114 specimens collected, including 19… Read more »

Making discoveries with our citizen science projects

An undescribed species of jumping spider, eating a fly. Observed by Pete McGregor, Ruahine Range, 13 December 2014. Image Pete McGregor CC BY-NC-ND. http://naturewatch.org.nz/observations/1128770

The spider and fern citizen science projects running alongside the DeCLASSIFIED! exhibition are roaring along. To date, there have been 101 participants and 745 observations in the Spiders with Te Papa project, and 83 participants and 1332 observations in the Ferns with Te Papa project.  Thank you to all these contributors. Phil Sirvid and I… Read more »

Follow citizen science biodiversity discoveries

I get a daily email from NatureWatch NZ listing the New Zealand observations of ferns added that day. This is an easy way to check for observations that are relevant to my research and/or that I can help identify.

Botrychium australe, parsley fern. Image Mike Lusk CC BY-NC. http://naturewatch.org.nz/observations/1366930

NatureWatch NZ is a citizen science website for recording New Zealand’s biodiversity. Many tens of observations are added each day, covering all kinds of life. NatureWatch NZ homepage. The quantity of new observations might seem overwhelming if you’re actually just interested in a particular group – perhaps you: are studying echinoderms, want to share your… Read more »