Cats In New Zealand
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Cats In New Zealand
Cats are a popular pet in New Zealand. Cat ownership is occasionally raised as a controversial conservation issue due to the predation of endangered species, such as birds and lizards, by feral cats. Domesticated cats The domestic cat (''Felis catus'') first arrived at New Zealand on Captain James Cook's ship ''HMS Endeavour'' in the mid-18th century, but were established by European settlers a century later. , there are an estimated 1.419 million domestic cats in New Zealand, with almost half of all households owning at least one and an average of 1.8 cats per household. Because of the effects of predation on New Zealand wildlife, domestic cat ownership is sometimes a contentious issue. Since the 1990s, cat-free subdivisions have occasionally been established to prevent predation occurring within nearby natural areas by domestic cats. In 1996 a cat-free subdivision was established at Waihi Beach, a landmark decision by the Western Bay of Plenty District Council. It was so ...
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Xenicus Lyalli
Lyall's wren or the Stephens Island wren (''Traversia lyalli'') is a small, extinct, flightless passerine belonging to the family Acanthisittidae, the New Zealand wrens. It was once found throughout New Zealand, but when it came to the attention of scientists in 1894, its last refuge was Stephens Island in Cook Strait. Often claimed to be a species driven extinct by a single creature (a lighthouse keeper's cat named Tibbles), the wren in fact fell victim to the island's numerous feral cats. The wren was described almost simultaneously by both Walter Rothschild and Walter Buller. It became extinct shortly after. Taxonomy The bird's scientific name commemorates the assistant lighthouse keeper, David Lyall, who first brought the bird to the attention of science. It was described as a distinct genus, ''Traversia'', in honour of naturalist and curio dealer Henry H. Travers, who procured many specimens from Lyall. ''Traversia'' is a member of the family Acanthisittidae, or the New ...
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Cuvier Island
Cuvier Island is a small uninhabited island off the east coast of the North Island of New Zealand. It lies on the seaward end of the Colville Channel, north of the Mercury Islands and approximately south-east of Great Barrier Island. The island is a wildlife sanctuary, managed by the Department of Conservation and is the subject of an ongoing island restoration project to eliminate non-native mammals and restore the original ecosystem. At one time in the 1920s the wife of the Lighthouse Keeper was the nominated Protector of Tuatara Lizards which were found in numbers at the rear of the housCuvier Island restoration (from the Department of Conservation website) It is also the location of the Cuvier Island Lighthouse which was constructed in 1889 and the wreck of the old ''HMNZS Philomel'' which was scuttled near the island on 6 August 1949 after decommissioning and being stripped of useful equipment. Geology The island is the remains of an igneous intrusion of the Coromandel Vo ...
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Raoul Island
Raoul Island (''Sunday Island'') is the largest and northernmost of the main Kermadec Islands, south south-west of 'Ata Island of Tonga and north north-east of New Zealand's North Island. It has been the source of vigorous volcanic activity during the past several thousand years that was dominated by dacitic explosive eruptions. The area of the anvil-shaped island, including fringing islets and rocks mainly in the northeast, but also a few smaller ones in the southeast, is . The highest elevation is Moumoukai Peak, at an elevation of . Although Raoul is the only island in the Kermadec group large enough to support settlement, it lacks a safe harbour, and landings from small boats can be made only in calm weather. The island consists of two mountainous areas, one with summits of and , and the other with a summit of , the two separated by a depression which is the caldera of the Raoul volcano. History Evidence from archaeological sites on the northern coast of Raoul Isla ...
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Mangere Island
Mangere Island (Moriori: ''Maung’ Rē'') is part of the Chatham Islands archipelago, located about east of New Zealand's South Island and has an area of . The island lies off the west coast of Pitt Island, south-east of the main settlement in the Chathams, Waitangi, on Chatham Island. Mangere and nearby Tapuaenuku ( Little Mangere) are the eroded remains of an ancient volcano of Pliocene age. Whakapa, the island's highest point, is above sea level. Forested until the 1890s, the island was largely cleared for sheep grazing. Rabbits and then cats were also introduced but later died out. Farmed until 1966, the island was then purchased by the New Zealand government and gazetted as a Nature Reserve.Mangere Island restoration
(from the Department of Conservation website)
The last sheep were removed i ...
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Stewart Island / Rakiura
Stewart Island ( mi, Rakiura, ' glowing skies', officially Stewart Island / Rakiura) is New Zealand's third-largest island, located south of the South Island, across the Foveaux Strait. It is a roughly triangular island with a total land area of . Its coastline is deeply creased by Paterson Inlet (east), Port Pegasus (south), and Mason Bay (west). The island is generally hilly (rising to at Mount Anglem) and densely forested. Flightless birds, including penguins, thrive because there are few introduced predators. Almost all the island is owned by the New Zealand government and over 80 per cent of the island is set aside as the Rakiura National Park. Stewart Island's economy depends on fishing and summer tourism. Its permanent population was recorded at 408 people in the 2018 census, most of whom live in the settlement of Oban on the eastern side of the island. Ferries connect the settlement to Bluff in the South Island. Stewart Island/Rakiura is part of the Southland D ...
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Lyall's Wren
Lyall's wren or the Stephens Island wren (''Traversia lyalli'') is a small, extinct, flightless passerine belonging to the family Acanthisittidae, the New Zealand wrens. It was once found throughout New Zealand, but when it came to the attention of scientists in 1894, its last refuge was Stephens Island in Cook Strait. Often claimed to be a species driven extinct by a single creature (a lighthouse keeper's cat named Tibbles), the wren in fact fell victim to the island's numerous feral cats. The wren was described almost simultaneously by both Walter Rothschild and Walter Buller. It became extinct shortly after. Taxonomy The bird's scientific name commemorates the assistant lighthouse keeper, David Lyall, who first brought the bird to the attention of science. It was described as a distinct genus, ''Traversia'', in honour of naturalist and curio dealer Henry H. Travers, who procured many specimens from Lyall. ''Traversia'' is a member of the family Acanthisittidae, or the New Ze ...
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Feral Cat
A feral cat or a stray cat is an unowned domestic cat (''Felis catus'') that lives outdoors and avoids human contact: it does not allow itself to be handled or touched, and usually remains hidden from humans. Feral cats may breed over dozens of generations and become an aggressive local apex predator in urban, savannah and bushland environments. Some feral cats may become more comfortable with people who regularly feed them, but even with long-term attempts at socialization, they usually remain aloof and are most active after dusk. Feral cats are devastating to wildlife, and conservation biologists consider them to be one of the worst invasive species on Earth. Attempts to control feral cat populations are widespread but generally of greatest impact within purpose-fenced reserves. Some animal rights groups advocate trap-neuter-return programs to prevent the feral cats from continuing to breed. Scientific evidence has demonstrated that TNR is not effective at controlling ...
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Invasive Species
An invasive species otherwise known as an alien is an introduced organism that becomes overpopulated and harms its new environment. Although most introduced species are neutral or beneficial with respect to other species, invasive species adversely affect habitats and bioregions, causing ecological, environmental, and/or economic damage. The term can also be used for native species that become harmful to their native environment after human alterations to its food webfor example the purple sea urchin ('' Strongylocentrotus purpuratus'') which has decimated kelp forests along the northern California coast due to overharvesting of its natural predator, the California sea otter (''Enhydra lutris''). Since the 20th century, invasive species have become a serious economic, social, and environmental threat. Invasion of long-established ecosystems by organisms is a natural phenomenon, but human-facilitated introductions have greatly increased the rate, scale, and geographic range ...
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Tiritiri Matangi Island
Tiritiri Matangi Island is located in the Hauraki Gulf of New Zealand, east of the Whangaparaoa Peninsula in the North Island and north east of Auckland. The island is an open nature reserve managed by the Supporters of Tiritiri Matangi Incorporated, under the supervision of the Department of Conservation and is noted for its bird life, including takahē, North Island kōkako and kiwi. It attracts between 30,000 and 32,000 visitors a year, the latter figure being the maximum allowed by the Auckland Conservation Management Strategy. The name, Māori for "tossed by the wind", is often popularly shortened to Tiritiri. Māori mythology considers the island to be a float of an ancestral fishing net. History Human use The first people to settle on the island were Māori of the Kawerau iwi. Later, members of the Ngāti Pāoa moved to the island, like the Kawerau partly for shark fishing until about 1700, when the Kawerau regained control and remained until forced to retr ...
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Stephens Island, New Zealand
Stephens Island is at the northernmost tip of the Marlborough Sounds in the South Island of New Zealand. It lies two kilometres to the northeast of Cape Stephens, the northernmost point of D'Urville Island. The island is in size, and rises high from the sea. History The island was owned by the Ngāti Koata iwi but was taken by the government to build a lighthouse in 1891. The Māori called it Takapourewa ("around the tower") but explorer Captain Cook renamed it Stephens Island in 1770 after Sir Phillip Stephens, Secretary of the Admiralty. The island featured in local mythos as the place where a local lighthouse keeper's cat, named Tibbles, was claimed to have caused the extinction of Lyall's wren in 1894. However, this belief was erroneous,Medway, D.G. (2004) The land bird fauna of Stephens Island, New Zealand in the early 1890s, and the cause of its demise. ''Notornis'', 51:201–211. an urban legend. While this cat did kill one of the last birds seen, a few more specimen ...
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Motuihe
Motuihe Island (official name: Motuihe Island / Te Motu-a-Ihenga) lies between Motutapu and Waiheke islands in the Hauraki Gulf of New Zealand, near Auckland. The island measures , of which around are remnants of coastal forest. The island is a recreation reserve controlled by the Department of Conservation (DOC) and administered by the Motuihe Trust. It is a popular spot for day trips, accessible from Auckland by seaplane or by private boat. The island is known for its beautiful beaches.Motuihe Recreation Reserve
. Department of Conservation. Retrieved 27 February 2008.
Motuihe Project
". Motuihe Trust. ...
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