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Takahē
The South Island
South Island
takahē, notornis, or takahē (Porphyrio hochstetteri), is a flightless bird indigenous to New Zealand
New Zealand
and belonging to the rail family. It was thought to be extinct after the last four known specimens were taken in 1898. However, after a carefully planned search effort the bird was rediscovered by Geoffrey Orbell near Lake Te Anau
Lake Te Anau
in the Murchison Mountains, South Island, on 20 November 1948
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Notornis (journal)
The Ornithological Society of New Zealand (OSNZ), also known as Birds New Zealand, is a non-profit organisation dedicated to the study of birds and their habitats in the New Zealand region. Founded in 1940, it caters to a wide variety of people interested in the birds of the region, from professional ornithologists to casual birdwatchers. The Society publishes a peer-reviewed quarterly scientific journal, Notornis, as well as a quarterly news magazine, Birds New Zealand (formerly Southern Bird).[1] It also organises membership-based scientific projects, such as the Atlas of Bird Distribution in New Zealand.Contents1 History 2 Aims 3 Notornis 4 Award 5 Notable members 6 References 7 External linksHistory[edit] Following preliminary discussions in 1938 and 1939, the Society was formally established at an inaugural general meeting chaired by Robert Falla at Canterbury Museum on May 24, 1940
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Te Anau
Te Anau is a town in the Southland region of the South Island of New Zealand. It is on the eastern shore of Lake Te Anau in Fiordland. Lake Te Anau is the largest lake in the South Island and within New Zealand second only to Lake Taupo. The 2013 census recorded the town's population as 1,911.[1] The town has a wide range of accommodation, with over 4,000 beds available in summer.[2] Tourism and farming are the predominant economic activities in the area. Lying as it does at the borders of Fiordland National Park, it is the gateway to a wilderness area famed for tramping and spectacular scenery. Many tourists come to Te Anau to visit the famous nearby fiords Milford Sound and Doubtful Sound. The town is also used as a base for those undertaking the Milford Track and the Kepler Track, the latter being a 4-day loop from Te Anau
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Species
In biology, a species is the basic unit of classification and a taxonomic rank, as well as a unit of biodiversity, but it has proven difficult to find a satisfactory definition. Scientists and conservationists need a species definition which allows them to work, regardless of the theoretical difficulties. If as Linnaeus
Linnaeus
thought, species were fixed, there would be no problem, but evolutionary processes cause species to change continually, and to grade into one another. A species is often defined as the largest group of organisms in which two individuals can produce fertile offspring, typically by sexual reproduction. While this definition is often adequate, when looked at more closely it is problematic. For example, with hybridisation, in a species complex of hundreds of similar microspecies, or in a ring species, the boundaries between closely related species become unclear
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Genus
A genus (/ˈdʒiːnəs/, pl. genera /ˈdʒɛnərə/) is a taxonomic rank used in the biological classification of living and fossil organisms in biology. In the hierarchy of biological classification, genus comes above species and below family. In binomial nomenclature, the genus name forms the first part of the binomial species name for each species within the genus.E.g. Felis catus
Felis catus
and Felis silvestris
Felis silvestris
are two species within the genus Felis. Felis
Felis
is a genus within the family Felidae.The composition of a genus is determined by a taxonomist. The standards for genus classification are not strictly codified, so different authorities often produce different classifications for genera
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Frontal Shield
A frontal shield, also known as a facial shield or frontal plate, is a feature of the anatomy of several bird species. It consists of a hard or fleshy plate of specialised skin extending from the base of the upper bill over the forehead. The size, shape and colour may exhibit testosterone-dependent variation in either sex during the year.[1] Functionality appears to relate to protection of the face while feeding in, or moving through, dense vegetation, as well as to courtship display and territorial defence.[2] It is a characteristic of some water birds in the rail family, especially the gallinules and moorhens, swamphens and coots, as well as in the Jacana family.[3][4] The watercock's frontal shield is extended above the head into a horn-like protuberance
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Plumage
Plumage
Plumage
(Latin: plūma "feather") refers both to the layer of feathers that cover a bird and the pattern, colour, and arrangement of those feathers. The pattern and colours of plumage differ between species and subspecies, and may vary with age classes. Within species there can be different colour morphs. The placement of feathers on a bird are not haphazard, but rather emerge in organized, overlapping rows and groups, and these feather tracts are known by standardized names.[1][2] Most birds moult, usually before and after breeding, resulting in a breeding or nuptial plumage and a basic plumage. Many ducks and some other species such as the red junglefowl have males wearing a bright nuptial plumage while breeding and a drab eclipse plumage for some months afterwards. The painted bunting's juveniles have two inserted moults in their first autumn, each yielding plumage like an adult females
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Weka
The weka (also known as Maori hen or woodhen) (Gallirallus australis) is a flightless bird species of the rail family. It is endemic to New Zealand, where four subspecies are recognized. Weka are sturdy brown birds, about the size of a chicken. As omnivores, they feed mainly on invertebrates and fruit. Weka usually lay eggs between August and January; both sexes help to incubate.Contents1 Description 2 Taxonomy and distribution 3 Behaviour3.1 Habitat and diet 3.2 Breeding and nesting4 Conservation status4.1 Threats5 Human interaction and folklore 6 References 7 External linksDescription[edit] Weka are large rails. They are predominantly rich brown mottled with black and grey; the brown shade varies from pale to dark depending on subspecies. The male is the larger sex at 50–60 cm (20–24 in) in length and 532–1,605 g (1.173–3.538 lb) in weight
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Maud Island
Maud Island, also called Te Hoiere in the Māori language, is the second-largest island in the Marlborough Sounds on the northern tip of the South Island of New Zealand, with a total area of 320 ha (790 acres). Coordinates: 41°02′S 173°53′E / 41.033°S 173.883°E / -41.033; 173.883Contents1 Fauna 2 Name 3 See also 4 External links 5 ReferencesFauna[edit] Maud Island is an important predator free nature reserve (officially a Scientific Reserve as defined under New Zealand's Reserves Act) to which only scientists and conservationists have access. Visitors need a special permit issued by the New Zealand Department of Conservation. Thanks to the efforts of conservationist Don Merton the kakapo was introduced onto the predator-free island in 1974. Additional kakapo were subsequently translocated onto other Islands like Codfish Island, Anchor Island and Little Barrier Island
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Mana Island, New Zealand
Mana Island is the smaller of two islands that lie off the southwest coast of the North Island of New Zealand (the larger is Kapiti Island). The island's name is an abbreviation of Te Mana o Kupe, "the mana of Kupe". Mana Island is a 3 km (1.9 mi) long, 2.17 km2 (0.84 sq mi) table, with cliffs along much of its coast and a plateau occupying much of the interior. It lies 3 km (1.9 mi) off the North Island coast in the Tasman Sea, west of the city of Porirua and south of the entrance to Porirua Harbour. In 2009, it was selected by the Global Restoration Network as one of New Zealand's top 25 sites for ecological restoration. Coordinates: 41°05′15″S 174°46′53″E / 41.0876°S 174.7815°E / -41.0876; 174.7815Contents1 History1.1 Vella family2 Conservation2.1 Habitat restoration 2.2 Animals2.2.1 Seabirds3 See also 4 References 5 External linksHistory[edit] Mana was established by Māori from the 14th century
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Rotoroa Island
Rotoroa Island is an island to the east of Waiheke Island in the Hauraki Gulf of New Zealand. It covers 82 hectares (200 acres). The Salvation Army purchased it for £400 in 1908 from the Ruthe family to expand their alcohol and drug rehabilitation facility at nearby Pakatoa Island. Men were treated at Home Bay at Rotoroa, while women were treated at Pakatoa. This treatment facility was closed in 2005.[1] The island was leased from the Salvation Army in February 2008 by Neal and Annette Plowman, who formed a trust to create a conservation park[2] on the island. They have begun a revegetation project which will eventually include 400,000 native plants. The chapel, schoolhouse and jail are being restored and a visitor centre will be built
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Scientific Name
Binomial nomenclature
Binomial nomenclature
("two-term naming system") also called binominal nomenclature ("two-name naming system") or binary nomenclature, is a formal system of naming species of living things by giving each a name composed of two parts, both of which use Latin
Latin
grammatical forms, although they can be based on words from other languages. Such a name is called a binomial name (which may be shortened to just "binomial"), a binomen, binominal name or a scientific name; more informally it is also called a Latin
Latin
name. The first part of the name identifies the genus to which the species belongs; the second part – the specific name or specific epithet – identifies the species within the genus. For example, humans belong to the genus Homo
Homo
and within this genus to the species Homo
Homo
sapiens
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Hauraki Gulf
The Hauraki Gulf
Hauraki Gulf
/ Tīkapa Moana is a coastal feature of the North Island of New Zealand. It has an area of 4000 km²,[1] and lies between, in anticlockwise order, the Auckland
Auckland
Region, the Hauraki Plains, the Coromandel Peninsula, and Great Barrier Island. Most of the gulf is part of the Hauraki Gulf
Hauraki Gulf
Marine Park. Hauraki is Māori for north wind.[2] In 2014, the gulf was officially named Hauraki Gulf
Hauraki Gulf
/ Tīkapa Moana.[3]Contents1 Geography1.1 Gulf 1.2 Islands 1.3 Firth of Thames2 Ecology2.1 Species 2.2 Environmental damage3 Marine Park3.1 Legal establishment 3.2 Significance4 ReferencesGeography[edit] Gulf[edit] The gulf is part of the Pacific Ocean, which it joins to the north and east
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Chionochloa
Chionochloa
Chionochloa
is a genus of tussock grass in the grass family, found primarily in New Zealand
New Zealand
with one known species in New Guinea
New Guinea
and another on Lord Howe Island
Lord Howe Island
(part of Australia).[1][2] Some of the species are referred to as snowgrass.[3] Most of the species in the genus grow in clumps, some up to 1.5 m tall. Red tussock dominates the tall tussock grasslands on the volcanic mountains of the North Island
North Island
of New Zealand
New Zealand
and can also be found in areas on the northern half of the South Island
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Paradise Shelduck
The paradise shelduck (Tadorna variegata) is a large goose-like duck endemic to New Zealand.[2][3] It is a shelduck, a group of large goose-like birds which are part of the bird family Anatidae. The genus name Tadorna comes from Celtic roots and means "pied waterfowl".[4] Known to the Māori as pūtangitangi, but now commonly referred to as the "paradise duck", it is a prized game bird
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Egg (biology)
An egg is the organic vessel containing the zygote in which an animal embryo develops until it can survive on its own; at which point the animal hatches. An egg results from fertilization of an ovum. Most arthropods, vertebrates, and mollusks lay eggs, although some, such as scorpions and most mammals, do not. Reptile
Reptile
eggs, bird eggs, and monotreme eggs are laid out of water, and are surrounded by a protective shell, either flexible or inflexible. Eggs laid on land or in nests are usually kept within a warm and favorable temperature range while the embryo grows. When the embryo is adequately developed it hatches, i.e
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