Read about Tora, a little boy with a big love for insects. Tora is determined to learn everything about his loved bugs and also to help them. One group of his favourite insects are bees, not the ones that produce native honey, but native bees that are crucial for Aotearoa New Zealand’s ecosystem. Bee inspired, Curator Invertebrates Julia Kasper shows us nature’s six-legged wonders through a child’s eye.
Massey University student Hayden Jones and Botany Curator Carlos Lehnebach are launching a citizen science project aiming at solving the identity crisis that surrounds one of our most common terrestrial orchids and your observation could provide the clue to solving this taxonomic imbroglio. Maikuku – the white sun orchid (Thelymitra
Snails and slugs are some of the most threatened animals on our planet today and their biodiversity is still vastly uncharted. In the digital age, community science platforms such as iNaturalist pose an interesting perspective to gather new information on these organisms through user-submitted photos and data. Using Brazil as a case study, our new study explores the potential of iNaturalist as a source of biological data on rare snails and slugs. Undergrad student Rafael Masson Rosa reports on some new discoveries and recent outcomes from the study.
This year Wellington is competing against over 400 cities worldwide, and five other New Zealand cities in the iNaturalist City Nature Challenge. The aim of this friendly bioblitz-style competition is to record as many species as possible in the four days from 29 April to 2 May. With our fabulous array of forest and marine reserves, we hope Wellington can show the rest of the country, and the world, what a biologically diverse city we live in.
One hundred years ago, Wellington naturalist George Hudson walked the forest near his home – now Zealandia wildlife sanctuary – in search of fascinating New Zealand insects. During the late 1800s and early 1900s, Hudson collected and identified thousands of moth specimens, now part of one of the largest insect collections in New Zealand.
Natural History intern Annie Robertson describes his legacy, the 100 Year Project, and what the citizen science and entomologist communities have found.
In 2018, Curator Invertebrates Julia Kasper put out a call on Te Papa’s blog looking for enthusiastic code crackers to decipher Hudson’s handwritten collection records with her post, Help crack the insect code. Approximately 80 people contacted Te Papa and asked about more information and how they could help with the research, and now Julia is hoping for more volunteers.