The Phantom Menace

In a land where invaders are cinematically popularised as battle-clad Orcs thundering down a mountainside wielding spiked clubs, it’s ironic that Public Enemy No. 1 is a butterfly—an ephemeral being borne on alabaster wings, not dissimilar to an already well-established cousin. And yet, this phantom menace threatens to wipe out a large number of native plants and more than 230,000 hectares of commercial crops.



Mar - Apr 2013



Oakley Creek

Great white butterfly



Travel & Adventure

What Lies Beneath

A small group of New Zealand’s elite cavers are pushing further than ever before into the marble heart of the Arthur Range, west of Nelson. To date, they’ve discovered 14 kilometres of previously unknown passages, and now, battling extreme cold, exhaustion and unrelenting rock, they are a hair’s breadth from connecting two of the country’s biggest and deepest cave systems.

Science & Environment

Lessons from little creatures

Robotic in form and startlingly efficient en masse, ants have outlived the dinosaurs and now scuttle over every major landmass but Antarctica. Humans can learn a lot from these diminutive critters, which communicate using cocktails of exotic pheromones, expeditiously divide labour among thousands, and silently conduct their small and significant lives for the greater good—of the colony and their immediate environment.


Pilgrim at Oakley Creek

Where can the city dweller look for the inexhaustible wild? Perhaps it lies closer than we think, on the flipside of the ordinary, along the unkempt edges of the familiar. An urban green space can become a site of pilgrimage, a place to discover a waterfall by moonlight.

Thanks, you're good to go!

Thanks, you're good to go!

{{ contentNotIncluded('company') }} has not subscribed to {{ contentNotIncluded('contentType') }}.

Ask your librarian to subscribe to this service next year. Alternatively, use a home network and buy a digital subscription—just $1/week...

Go back


Subscribe to our free newsletter for news and prizes


Give it a crack, try NZGeo for $1

Unlimited access to every NZGeo story ever written and hundreds of hours of natural history documentaries on all your devices.

Already a subscriber? Sign in