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Currently Browsing: New Zealand

Tusked Weta Versus Foraging Pig

Regular readers may remember my recent post about the rare New Zealand Mountain Stone Weta. The Tusked Weta (Motuweta isolata) is also critically endangered, though its impressive tusks and usual habitat make it slightly better known. I always thought “The Dead Wetas” would be a really good heavy metal band name. (See below for a Heavy Metal Band Name Generator.) The Mountain Stone Weta, with... read more

Bulford Kiwi Given Protection Status

If you’re a New Zealander, or someone who knows about kiwi, you’re probably wondering what a “Bulford Kiwi” is. Well, it’s not a new species of kiwi. In fact, it’s not even in New Zealand. The Bulford Kiwi is a giant carving in the chalk hills of southern England, near Stonehenge. Think of the famous White Horse at Uffington, except it’s not prehistoric, and... read more

New Zealand’s Stone Weta – Genuine Cryogenics

The Mountain Stone Weta is the subject of the fourth release in a row from BBC Earth relating to New Zealand. They’re on quite a roll when it comes to short clips about my country, which I’m loving of course. There are more than seventy species of weta in New Zealand, some more common than others. According to Wikipedia, they belong to the families Anostostomatidae and Rhaphidophoridae, though... read more

The Carniverous Giant Powelliphanta Snail

Nobody loves me Everybody hates me I’m going down the garden to eat worms … That’s the children’s poem that came to mind when I saw this video. It’s of Powelliphanta snail, a rare giant snail that’s native to New Zealand. The Powelliphanta snail is carniverous, and mostly eats worms – “sucking them down like spaghetti”. They also eat slugs from time to... read more

Kiwi Courtship – The Female Takes Charge

BBC Earth has done it again – given us another wonderful video of native New Zealand fauna. A couple of days ago there was a special video of Tuatara hatching. This time it’s the brown kiwi. The kiwi of course is the endangered flightless bird New Zealanders get their nickname from. We also gave the name to a fruit – the Chinese gooseberry (genus – actinidia). Given anti-Chinese... read more

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