Archives For Native

Today’s photo of the week is one of the six new Antipodes Island parakeets that have taken up residence at Pukaha Mount Bruce.

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After a long flight home a pair of jewelled geckos are settling back in to life in New Zealand after they were illegally smuggled to Germany.

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A key to the conservation of our nationally endangered little brown moth is determining its host plant and habitat requirements. Brian Patrick is working towards solving the mystery.

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If you’re out in the bush this spring, look out for one of our most striking native plants, the critically endangered ngutukākā/kakabeak.

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Meet Teviot flathead galaxias, one of the five species of New Zealand native freshwater fish, whose threat of extinction has recently been listed as nationally critical—the highest threat category

Gulp, gulp… I’m Teviot flathead galaxias, but you can call me Tev.

I live, with every other Teviot on the planet, in a small part of the Teviot River in Otago… gulp, gulp.

If you think that sounds crowded you’d be wrong. There aren’t that many of us. Probably less than 100. So, it’s actually kinda lonely.

Teviot flathead galaxias.

Not just any Teviot flathead galaxias — it’s me!

I may not be as famous as Sirocco the kākāpō (…yet), but some of my family are quite well known. Unfortunately for them though, it’s for how they taste in a fritter… gulp, gulp.

I am every bit as threatened as my feathery friend though. We’re both classified in the New Zealand Threat Classification System as ‘nationally critical’—that’s just one step away from ‘extinct’… gulp, gulp.  

It’s tough to be a small fish like me, as there are many threats to my home, including land use changes, gravel extraction, water abstraction, drain clearing and declining water quality… gulp, gulp.

On top of all this, introduced trout—who are a lot bigger than me—think I’m quite tasty… gulp, gulp—just like you humans with your whitebait fritters.

Gollum galaxias - classified as 'nationally vulnerable'

Gollum galaxias – classified as ‘nationally vulnerable’

I think there’s room for us all—native fish, trout and humans, but we fish rely on you humans to talk to each other and work together to come up with ways to keep our rivers and lakes clean and beautiful and, importantly, to keep me off the ‘extinct’ list… gulp, gulp.

Longfin eel - classified as 'declining'.

Longfin eel – classified as ‘declining’

If you’d like to know more about the conservation status of New Zealand freshwater fish you can find our more information on the Waiology blog.

The Department of Conservation website has the official information on where our freshwater fish are rated on the New Zealand Threat Classification System

Today’s photo of the week is of a native fern growing next to the Blue Pools on the West Coast of the South Island.

New Zealand is home to about 200 fern species, ranging from ten-metre-high tree ferns, to filmy ferns just 20 millimetres long. About 40% of these species occur nowhere else in the world.

Native fern growing by blue pools. Photo by Daniel Pietzsch | CC BY-NC 2.0.

Te Papa Museum is holding an online Science Live event this Friday (16 May) which will take viewers into the secret world of New Zealand’s ferns.

Botany curator, Leon Perrie, will be there to talk about our native fern species. Leon will also be answering questions during the live broadcast.

The event will be streaming live from 2—2:30 pm on the Te Papa YouTube channel.

Photo by Daniel Pietzsch | CC BY-NC 2.0

Today’s photo of the week is a boulder copper butterfly — one of the many endemic species of butterfly found in New Zealand.

Boulder copper butterfly. Photo: Jon Sullivan (CC BY-NC 2.0).

Boulder copper butterflies can be found throughout the South Island and in central areas of the North Island, but are more commonly encountered in the upland areas like the Southern Alps and the central plateau.

This beauty was photographed in Canterbury’s Craigieburn Forest Park by Jon Sullivan | CC BY-NC 2.0