Living World

Birds of play

Packs of kea are reliable entertainers in places such as Arthur’s Pass or Glacier Country, and new research is showing that kea are smarter and have more complex communication than previously thought. But large flocks in tourism hotspots conceal the fact that kea numbers are dramatically falling across the Southern Alps. Why is this? How can we reverse it? And what do we still have to learn about them?


Science & Environment

State of mind

The number of New Zealanders seeking help for mental illness is rising: it’s now the third-highest cause of ill health in the country, and doctors, specialists and community organisations are struggling to meet the need for treatment and intensive care. Meanwhile, researchers are attempting to identify what takes place in the brain before and during a mental illness. It’s a young and inexact science—and at the moment, it’s all we’ve got.


P class

Most of the stellar yachting careers of New Zealand’s America’s Cup sailors began in humble seven-foot boats—a class now a century old—designed by a Public Works employee who couldn’t swim, and who was too hard up to build anything larger.


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