An important function for Te Papa’s natural history collections is to document the plants and animals we have in New Zealand. What species are present, how can they be distinguished, and where do they occur? These questions need addressing before our biodiversity, both indigenous and exotic, can be managed inRead more

Notothlaspi rosulatum. New Zealand, Canterbury, Clarence River, Mount St Patrick. Image: Antony Kusabs, Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa.

In late 2014, 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 spp.) and New Zealand hebes (Veronica spp.). See the first blog in this series for the detailed itinerary. Along the way, other native (and naturalised) species wereRead more

Sam Johnson of the Canterbury’s Student Volunteer Army (SVA) is in the news again! This time, however, the world’s media have zoomed in not on Sam’s amazing volunteer work and leadership following the Canterbury Earthquakes, but on his dance moves. During Prince Charles and Camilla’s recent visit to Christchurch, Sam took the Duchess of Cornwall for a spin onRead more

On the weekend down in Canterbury, apart from the horrific earthquake, there was an extremely unusual dolphin stranding. A 1.8m male Hourglass dolphin came ashore at Flea Bay. Only a handful of complete specimens of this species have ever been dissected before. Although they are sometimes seen in the Southern OceanRead more