Between November 2022 and February 2023, Natural History interns Tobia Dale and Ben Carson assisted with the curation of three major donations of New Zealand frogs and lizards. Following their first blog on processing pickled pepeketua (native frogs), this second blog describes their processing of a large collection of native lizards from the 1980s, and an opportunity to see several of these species in the wild on Mana Island.
Mana Island, near Wellington, is one of Aotearoa New Zealand’s conservation success stories. Farmed for more than 150 years, the island is now covered with forest that is overflowing with an abundance of endemic birds, lizards and insects. Using pairs of images taken 50 years apart, natural history curator Dr Colin Miskelly describes how and why the island was transformed from a farm to a thriving sanctuary.
Fairy prions are small burrow-nesting seabirds that breed in large colonies on many islands around New Zealand. The largest colony (of about 1.8 million pairs) is on Takapourewa / Stephens Island in the western approaches to Cook Strait. As part of a project to restore the ecology of Mana Island
Most people think of weevils as little maggoty grubs that infest stored grain products. Which is true, but the reality is that the weevil family is the most diverse family of organisms on the planet, with more than 50,000 species. Weevils are beetles, and adults are characterised by having a
2011 was a grim year for New Zealand seabirds. They suffered the triple-whammy of nuclear-fallout from the crippled Fukushima Daiichi power plant affecting the North Pacific non-breeding grounds of at least four species, a severe winter storm that killed up to half a million prions, then the Rena oil spill