The lie of the land

In August 1849, Sarah and Isaac Cripps and their three children boarded the Fancy, bound for Auckland Island, 465 kilometres south of New Zealand. They were part of a group of 66 prospective colonists planning to start a new settlement in the subantarctic. As they put to sea, they imagined the sunny weather and gentle pastures that awaited them. They would not find out until December that they’d all been tricked.



Jul - Aug 2018

Tiny houses

Sustainable seas


Predator-free Fiordland



Living World

The first test

If we’re serious about Predator Free 2050—about ridding New Zealand of every last rat, stoat and possum—then Fiordland poses its sternest backcountry test. If we can pull it off here, we can pull it off in any of our national parks. What makes this land so difficult—and so important?


What we do in the shallows

The ocean is our playground, storehouse, transport corridor, driver of weather and coastal change. We’ve learned the hard way that it’s possible for us to exhaust its resources and overwhelm its natural processes. Now, scientists are mapping the web of relationships between the sea, the land and human industry, to figure out how fishing, aquaculture, tourism, land development, and recreation affect its health. What should be permitted, and what prohibited—and where? How can we best strike a balance between using and protecting our seas?


Tiny houses

The idea of minimal living, an international fad, has fallen on fertile soil in New Zealand, thanks to our national housing crisis and shifting ideas about the way we want to live. For some people, a tiny house is the only home they will ever afford to own. Others are stepping off the treadmill of modern life to ask: How much space does a person really need?


Pattern recognition

Prime numbers act as locks and keys to bank accounts—and cracking them requires solving a riddle that dates back to ancient times.


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