Our world of nature

Our world of nature

Seductive kākāpō, rocking wrens and the magnificent Flint.

Sexy kākāpō are world famous. No Such Thing As A Fish is a popular podcast delivering a stream of seemingly nonsensical facts that actually turn out to be hilariously true. They’ve just published The Book of the Year 2019, and we’re proud that DOC’s ‘saxy music for the kākāpō’ has made the ‘10 of the strangest animal stories from 2019’ list. It joins prestigious stories like Florida’s iguana-pocalypse and the emotional-support humans given to rhinos with a fear of flying.

Flint, the very best of doggos. Flint has a very important job. The small Jack Russell-Fox Terrier cross works as a rodent detector on the subantarctic Campbell Island. In November Flint’s DOC team was making their way back to the boat when they were charged by a sea lion, causing Flint to bolt. Despite the best efforts of searchers on the ground and in the air Flint could not be found and, with impending bad weather and a mechanical issue, the team had to abandon their efforts and return to Dunedin. It was a nerve-wracking time, as Flint was wearing a muzzle and unable to feed himself. After 36 hours a rescue effort made it back to the remote island. There, waiting patiently at the base across the island, was Flint. What a good boy!

Rock on! Rock Wren numbers are, possibly, on the rise. While it is still on the endangered list, recent surveys have found evidence that NZ’s only true alpine bird is more widely spread than once thought. A team of 18 recently surveyed nine sites in the Mackenzie Basin, discovering birds at seven of them. This effort was part of the part of the Te Manahuna Aoraki project, a multi-agency predator control initiative that is seeking to turn the area into a predator-free zone within 20 years.