Who doesn’t know them, the little stars of Aotearoa – glow-worms? Titiwai, their Māori name refers to lights reflected in water. Who hasn’t been mesmerised by their sparkling light, visiting a cave or seeing them in the bush during a night walk? Insect Curator Julia Kasper talks about her research on the iconic critter with the glowing bum.
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.