In the underwater labyrinth of the Poor Knights islands are fish that have learned to talk. Dive in with scientist Lucy Van Oosterom, who is trying to figure out what they're saying.
Blue Maomao Arch, tucked into a corner of South Harbour at the Poor Knights hosts huge aggregations of maomao. But can you see the demoiselles?
Join scientist Lucy van Oosterom on an underwater scooter at the Poor Knights.
French oceanographer Jacques Cousteau rated the Poor Knights Islands off Northland’s east coast as one of the top 10 dive spots in the world. Twenty-five years after they were gazetted a marine reserve, they remain as magnificent as ever, a place of rare undersea richness where exciting biological discoveries continue to be made.
At the northern extent of the Poor Knights Islands is a gash in the rock, cutting through a promontory to a depth of more than 40 metres. Pink maomao and rays parade through it, day in day out.
The Poor Knights are a place where giant wetas and giant landsnails still browse the forests, where large poisonous centipedes and shore crabs stalk the forest floor after dark. It’s also home to a large variety of lizards which pollinate the flowers and distribute the seeds of the forest. Once all these animals lived on the New Zealand mainland, but they would never survive today for this is a slice of New Zealand the way it once was and can never be again.
Bill Ballantine, recognised as the father of marine reserves in this country and a pioneer in global marine conservation, passed away, aged 78.
A former editor recalls how he was smitten by deceptively simple creatures.
The Poor Knights was among the first of New Zealand's marine reserves, benefiting from a groundswell of public interest that for a time saw Aotearoa leading the world.
At a group of tall rock stacks south of the Poor Knights is a huge cavern at a depth of 25 metres, choked with fish and rays, and wallpapered in colourful sponges.
“The sea has all our dreams,” writes Keri Hulme. For some, those dreams are of strange and wonderful creatures, such as you might find 70 metres below the surface at the Poor Knights Islands. For others, the dreams are of the ocean’s untapped riches: minerals, fossil fuels, sea creatures, energy. Which dreams will prevail in 21st-century Aotearoa?