Dying plants double
"New calculation of threatened species gives startling result"
Nature, Science Update
1 November 2002

Rapid Antarctic warming puzzle
"UK scientists say parts of Antarctica have recently been warming much faster than the rest of the Earth"
6 December 2001

Antarctic penguins in peril
"Tens of thousands of baby penguins could starve to death as their parents are having to walk up to 50 kilometres (30 miles) further than usual to get food ..."
12 January 2002

Ross Island penguins struggling
"The penguins on Ross Island in Antarctica are battling to provide food for their chicks for another breeding season ..."
New Zealand Herald
9 January 2003

Home > About us    

California Nonprofit Public Benefit Corporation
  New Zealand Charitable Trust

..... environmental organisations dedicated to protecting native habitat and wildlife, and sustaining biological diversity on land and in the sea ... and conserving terrestrial open space and establishing marine protected areas .....


..... working to establish safe habitat for endangered fauna, through ecological system management ...

Forty percent of New Zealand's birds have become extinct since human occupation. Today, most indigenous bird populations continue to decline.  Yellowhead and kiwi loss is greater than previously projected, the kaka population has been found to be predominately male, takahe have not made a comeback, etc .....

Intensive pest control provides safe sanctuaries for wildlife .....

Causes of fauna decline are loss of habitat, and predation of chicks and eggs by introduced animals such as possums, stoats and rats.

TerraNature works to restore ecological systems .....

When Polynesians settled in the 13th century, 85 percent of New Zealand was covered with forest containing a rich, unique fauna.

The nation has one of the world's worst records of habitat destruction.  By 1600 a third of the original forests had been lost.  They were burnt or destroyed by human and natural events, and replaced by grassland.

Since mid-19th century European settlement, a second greater wave of destruction took another third of the original forests, as timber was milled and forests cleared for pastoral grazing.

TerraNature's goal is to protect places of high scenic, natural resource, ecological, open space or public amenity value by acquisition of land .....

Urban sprawl is one of the worst problems facing the world today, and New Zealand is no exception even though the country has an average population density of only 37 people per square mile.  A distinct concentration of New Zealand's expansion occurs in the northern half of the North Island, where about fifty percent of the population live.

The already sprawling Auckland region is projected to double in size to 2 million people during the next fifty years.  A more mobile and affluent society is inhabiting suburban homes, country estates and second homes further and further afield.  Land development is particularly impacting coastal areas where many people want to live or recreate.

TerraNature is working to help protect deep-sea biodiversity

Recent discoveries in the deep-sea reveal hundreds of previously unknown species, and massive seamount topographical features with very different ecosystems.

This is the new ecological frontier of the 21st century.  Deep-sea ecosystems are being destroyed by bottom trawl fishing before science even has the chance to identify them.  Immediate biodiversity protection measures are needed in the deep-sea to stop destructive fishing practices and other future exploitation.

TerraNature is creating an awareness of the issue of mineral prospecting, and the adverse impact of mining throughout the Exclusive Economic Zone .....

The emerging industry of deep-sea mineral mining on seamounts and around the hydrothermal vents, is a threat to unique ecosystems that have not yet been defined.  The impact ocean noise from mining is projected to affect the migration of marine animals.  Mineral prospecting is proceeding without any environmental restrictions on either exploratory or future extraction operations.

TerraNature supports the effort to stabilize the loss of biodiversity .....

Biodiversity is vital to sustain all life forms on land and in the ocean, and has quality of life and economic value.  It is biological wealth to a land-based primary producing economy, and the sustainability of fisheries.  Biodiversity supports food and fibre production resources, and plays an essential ecosystem servicing function.

..... and encourages interest and learning of the environment

A greater public awareness of New Zealand's unique non-mammalian fauna, ancient endemic flora, human-caused extinctions, forest destruction, and destructive deep-sea fishing is beneficial in stabilizing the loss of biodiversity.

Motivation for environmental action

An underlying motivation of TerraNature is climate change caused by global warming.  Nothing incites the spirit of environmental action more than the magnitude of climate change, and the dramatic changes in current weather conditions that are attributable to it.

Climatologists predicted 30 years ago that warming of the Earth will be more prominent at the polar regions.  They have been proven to be quite correct.

See more
Global warming: Recent warming of Arctic may affect worldwide climate

It is known from ancient air bubbles trapped in the ice cores of Antarctica's interior, that there is now more carbon dioxide in the atmosphere than at any time during the last 40,000 years.  Eight of the last ten years the 20th century were the hottest in recorded history.

Antarctica is Earth's most useful climate change laboratory, sending warnings that are invaluable in understanding a changing environment.

Nature demonstrated the enormity and the reality of global warming, when a 2,000 square mile piece of ice broke away from the Antarctic Peninsula.  This is equal in area to three Coromandel Peninsulas, or the State of Rhode Island.

Who can tell the rousing story of environmental change better than Antarctica's Adelie penguins, that have abandoned at least one colony in the area of Palmer Station every year since 1988. It was reported in 2002 that the North polar ice cap has been reduced by 15%, and the ice is half as thick, which brings attention to the polar bear's future.

We are appalled that in 1907 New Zealand's huia was hunted to extinction, because of the world fashion to wear its tail feathers in hats.  Despite this, a widespread reduction in indigenous bird populations has since been ongoing, continuing today before our eyes. These are powerful, motivating incentives for protecting wildlife and native habitat.

Photo credit:
Top: Lake Monowai, Copyright © Marcus Benbow 2008.
Center top: Takahe Porphyrio mantelli Crown Copyright © Department of Conservation.
Center 2nd down: Fern, permission of Virtual New Zealand.
Center 3rd down: A "black smoker" on the Brothers seamount, emitting a hot hydrothermal plume of mineral rich fluid, courtesy of JAMSTEC.
Center bottom: Yellow-eyed penguin Megadyptes antipodes, permission of Tom Marshall/wildfocus.org.

Copyright © 2003-2008 TerraNature Trust. All rights reserved.

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