What's On at Zealandia


Weasel Incursion and Response 29 October 2018

Weasel Incursion and Response

Frequently Asked Questions

The October 2018 weasel incursion of ZEALANDIA garnered a lot of publicity and many questions. We've compiled answers to some of the most common ones that we received.

Meet our Newest Arrivals 21 August 2018

Meet our Newest Arrivals

Kākahi / Freshwater Mussels

You may not see very much of the newest arrivals in the valley, but they are being carefully monitored all the same.

Two hundred kākahi (New Zealand freshwater mussels) have just been translocated from Wairarapa Moana and the Parangarahu lakes to the Upper Lake with the help of iwi partners, Taranaki Whānui, Ngāti Kahungunu, and Rangitāne o Wairarapa. Two different kākahi  species were included in the translocation: Echyridella menziesi and Echyridella aucklandica.

New Zealand’s lizards: remembering a forgotten fauna 23 July 2018

New Zealand’s lizards: remembering a forgotten fauna

New Zealand: a land of birds?

Aotearoa is well known as a land of birds. Some of the earliest observations of the country’s natural history were ornithological: Joseph Banks famously described being “awakd by the singing of the birds ashore” on his voyage aboard the HMS Endeavour (1768-1771). Ngā manu (birds) often appear in whakataukī (Māori proverbs). The phrase: “He Kotuku rerenga tahi/ A white heron flies once” is used to refer to an auspicious occasion. Birds are taonga and part of the ‘kiwi’ identity. They have become part of our national brand, standing for the uniqueness of our way of life and the fragility of our ecosystems, and we treasure them for it.

Kākahi are coming to ZEALANDIA! 12 July 2018

Kākahi are coming to ZEALANDIA!

Learn about this important ecological engineer

ZEALANDIA is welcoming a new addition to the sanctuary - Kākahi (freshwater mussels) are being introduced to our upper lake for the first time!

While they don’t have feathers and eyes, we are REALLY excited. The two species of kākahi are considered as ‘At Risk – Declining’ by the Department of Conservation—and they have a very important role as an ‘ecosystem engineer’ in our waterways. They can help keep lakes clean and healthy.

Pikirangi (green mistletoe) makes its way to ZEALANDIA 7 May 2018

Pikirangi (green mistletoe) makes its way to ZEALANDIA

ZEALANDIA has received the precious fruits of the rare plant, pikirangi or green mistletoe (Ileostylus micranthus). This species has disappeared from Te Māra a Tāne (the sanctuary valley) and Wellington City, and is rare in the wider Wellington region.

An Island, A Classroom 2 May 2018

An Island, A Classroom

By Perry Hyde

New Zealand’s southernmost school is a shining example of the active role of education in conservation efforts. With a mere 32 students, Halfmoon Bay School (Oban - Rakiura/Stewart Island) certainly punches above its weight.

Wellington is becoming a global leader as we learn to live with nature 30 January 2018

Wellington is becoming a global leader as we learn to live with nature

Our nation’s capital is being celebrated as ‘an ecological triumph’ (National Geographic January 2018)—Wellington is one of the only cities in the world where the diversity of native birds is increasing. This change has been driven by the establishment of ZEALANDIA 22 years ago, the 225 ha sanctuary for wildlife just 3 km from downtown Wellington. 

Native fish surveying 24 January 2018

Native fish surveying

Restoring ZEALANDIA's waterways

ZEALANDIA has a 500-year vision of restoration, and our lakes offer a unique challenge in this respect. They are man-made, and restoring them to the state they were in before the dams went up is not really an option. As a result, we are now aiming to create healthy, functioning lake ecosystems here in the heart of Wellington.

Sanctuary to Sea 23 November 2017

Sanctuary to Sea

Kia Mauriora te Kaiwharawhara

ZEALANDIA’s first 20 years was all about focusing on the land within our pioneering predator-proof fence, and what a success this has been. The valley now harbours a rich habitat for many birds, lizards, and invertebrates, and our vegetation is now thriving. This achievement wouldn’t have been possible without the generosity of a huge range of volunteers, members, staff and donors that have supported the project along the way.

Freshwater Citizen Science at ZEALANDIA 23 November 2017

Freshwater Citizen Science at ZEALANDIA

On 18th November 2017, Greater Wellington Regional Council (GWRC) run its first Freshwater Citizen Science workshop aimed at community groups. This workshop was held in ZEALANDIA as part of its new project, Sanctuary to Sea. Around 40 people from all ages and from various locations around the Wellington region, including Kaiwharawhara water catchment, Owhiro and Waiwhetu streams, attended this instructive and fun event.


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