Biodiversity

Latest news

With cascading waterfalls and native bush tumbling down mountainous terrain, Fiordland is one of the most eye-catching parts of the country. But peer beneath the waves and you'll see that Fiordland's marine invertebrate and seaweed communities are every bit as remarkable and awe-inspiring.
Sadie Mills has come a long way from scaring the inhabitants of Scottish rock pools. Sarah Fraser explains.
A lack of information about New Zealand oceanic shark populations is making it difficult to assess how well they are doing, says a NIWA researcher.
Jellyfish blooms are likely to be a common sight this summer with rising ocean temperatures one of the main causes of substantial population growths.

Our work

The ability to properly manage our freshwater resources requires a solid understanding of the flora and fauna which live in and interact with them.
NIWA hosted an IPBES workshop entitled “Visions for nature and nature’s contributions to people for the 21st century” held from 4-8 September 2017 in Auckland.
NIWA is conducting a five–year study to map changes in the distribution of plankton species in surface waters between New Zealand and the Ross Sea.
Our oceans are expected to become more acidic as carbon dioxide concentrations rise. This will likely have impacts on the plankton, which play a major role in ocean ecosystems and processes.

Latest videos

Antarctic science onboard NIWA’s RV Tangaroa
Researchers are working their way through a wealth of new Antarctic marine data after RV Tangaroa successfully completed its five week scientific voyage to the Ross Sea.
Critter of the deep - episode 3: sea spider
Sea spiders look similar to land spiders, but they are in their own special group.
Dr Jade Maggs talks about reef sharks
A global survey involving 123 scientists from 58 nations raises concerns about the global status of reef sharks.
A journey under the ice, with Peter Marriott
Chill-proofed divers plunge in the Ross sea, Antarctica.
One of the world's leading scientific publishers has named a paper cowritten by a NIWA scientist as one of 250 groundbreaking findings that could "help change the world".
NIWA hosted an IPBES workshop entitled “Visions for nature and nature’s contributions to people for the 21st century” held from 4-8 September 2017 in Auckland.
A team of international researchers leaves Wellington this weekend to explore the bottom of the Kermadec Trench – one of the deepest places in the ocean.
Recording underwater biodiversity after earthquakes

NIWA’s marine ecologist Dr Dave Bowden talks about the catastrophic changes to the seafloor in the Kaikoura Canyon following the November 2016 earthquake.

A NIWA scientist is calling for greater protection of submarine canyons around New Zealand as their rich marine life comes under increasing threat from human activity.
Exploring the deepsea

Despite many centuries of maritime exploration, only a fraction of our planet's seafloor has been observed. NIWA Deepsea Scientist Di Tracey tells us what it feels like to probe deep beneath the waves to see what's living on the ocean floor.

The seafloor of the Ross Sea region is covered in ice for much of the year, but many benthic sea creatures live and thrive there.
Te Papa has released a publication containing information, including pictures, distribution maps for all 1,262 known fish species found in our waters.
The Southwestern Pacific OBIS Node site is a gateway to marine biodiversity data from Antarctica to as far north as Fiji.
Identifying creepy crawlies in your local stream just got a whole lot easier and faster, thanks to a new 3D identification system developed by a NIWA researcher.
Taking the pulse of Antarctica’s ocean ecosystem
Niwa scientists have anchored an echosounder to the sea floor of Terra Nova Bay that could reveal the mystery of silverfish reproduction under the Antarctic ice.
NIWA scientists have anchored an echosounder to the sea floor of Terra Nova Bay that could reveal the mystery of silverfish reproduction under the Antarctic ice.
Now back on dry land, Voyage Leader Richard O'Driscoll reflects on the final days of RV Tangaroa's 2015 Antarctica expedition.
It has been another amazing week here on the Tangaroa. On Saturday we saw Antarctica which was an absolutely breath-taking experience that I’ll remember for the rest of my life!
Scientists from the Australian Antarctic Division explain the blue whale research they are leading onboard the New Zealand-Australia Antarctic Ecosystems Voyage 2015.
NIWA voyage leader Dr Richard O’Driscoll updates the Tangaroa’s encounter with the planet’s largest living beings – the Antarctic blue whales – and discovers what’s on their menu.
The first objective of the New Zealand- Australia Antarctic Ecosystems Voyage was successfully achieved with the completion of the research at the Balleny Islands.

An interactive guide to the sea stars, brittle stars, feather stars, sea eggs, and sea cucumbers (echinoderms) of New Zealand.

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All staff working on this subject

Principal Scientist - Fisheries
Principal Scientist - Marine Ecology
Principal Scientist - Freshwater Ecology
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Strategy Manager - Coasts & Estuaries
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Principal Scientist - Marine Ecology
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Marine Invertebrate Systematist
Principal Scientist - Marine Ecology
Regional Manager - Wellington
Fisheries Scientist
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Marine Biology Technician
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Marine Ecology Technician
Principal Technician - Marine Biology
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Marine Biologist
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