New Zealand

Maidenhair ferns frame the cavernous entrance to a 350-foot-long cave that opens in the backyard of an Auckland suburban home.

Bringing Auckland’s Volcanic Underworld to Light

Scientists are working to map and protect the city's underground tunnels so they aren’t destroyed during construction

An 18th-century illustration of a jury of matrons

How All-Female 'Juries of Matrons' Shaped Legal History

Courts called on these jurors to determine whether women sentenced to death were pregnant or faking it to avoid execution

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Tweak the Recipe of This Australian Biscuit, and You Can Get a Hefty Fine or Even Jail Time

On April 25, a national holiday called Anzac Day, Aussies enjoy an Anzac biscuit in honor of military veterans

P. karlraubenheimeri lived during the Miocene Epoch roughly 8.8 million years ago.

Fossil Hunter Discovers Gigantic Crab in New Zealand—a New, Extinct Species

The massive creature is 8.8 million years old, and its modern descendants in Australia can grow to be the weight of a human toddler

A critically endangered kākāpō rests in a tree.

Inside New Zealand’s Quest to Save Its Rotund, Flightless Parrots

Researchers are slowly restoring the endangered kākāpō using DNA sequencing, GPS tracking and tailored diets

The Capital Kiwi Project members discovered two kiwi chicks late last month.

Wild Kiwis Born Near New Zealand's Capital for the First Time in More Than 150 Years

Conservationists discovered two brown kiwi chicks one year after the birds were reintroduced in a Wellington suburb

The Australasian crested grebe, or pūteketeke, won New Zealand's Bird of the Century contest with 290,000 votes.

Puking Bird Wins New Zealand's Bird of the Century Contest After John Oliver Campaign

The comedian launched an “alarmingly aggressive” global effort on behalf of the pūteketeke to shore up its victory in the annual popularity competition

An artist's interpretation of what Wilson's little penguins would have looked like

New Extinct Species of 'Ridiculously Cute,' Tiny Penguins Discovered in New Zealand

Scientists identified the diminutive birds after finding two of their fossilized skulls

Nihohae matakoi swam in waters off the coast of New Zealand around 25 million years ago.

These Prehistoric Dolphins Had Tusk-Like Teeth

The animals likely thrashed their heads back and forth to injure or stun prey with their unusual, horizontal teeth

Now extinct, thylacines are carnivorous marsupials that once roamed freely around Australia, Tasmania and New Guinea.

Extinct Tasmanian Tigers May Have Survived Longer Than Previously Thought

Though the last documented thylacine died in 1936, a new study based on alleged sightings suggests the species lived for decades more

An artist's depiction of Macronectes tinae, a newly identified extinct species of giant petrel that lived in New Zealand.

Amateur Fossil Hunter Discovers New Species of Giant Petrel in New Zealand

The now-extinct birds, which lived roughly three million years ago, likely used their hooked bills to feast on seal carcasses

Pottery from the wreck of the Josephine Willis, which has been granted historical protection by the British government

Shipwreck Carrying Rare 19th-Century Ceramics Gets Government Protection

The British emigrant vessel sank with a cargo of Victorian pottery on board

An artist's concept of Kumimanu fordycei and Petradyptes stonehousei

Fossils of a 340-Pound Giant Penguin Found in New Zealand

Paleontologists unearthed the bones of two new penguin species that lived 50 million years ago

Barnaby Domigan with the giant earthworm

Nine-Year-Old Finds a Three-Foot-Long Earthworm in His Backyard

The New Zealand boy named the creature “Dead Fred”

A Haast's eagle hunts moa.

How a Giant Eagle Once Came to Dominate New Zealand

Before the formidable bird went extinct, scientists say it likely hunted the flightless moa

Korora, the world’s smallest living penguin

Hundreds of Little Blue Penguins Are Turning Up Dead in New Zealand

Rising ocean temperatures are likely causing the flightless birds to starve to death

Draughtsboard sharks apparently snooze with their eyes open or closed depending on the amount of surrounding light.

Sharks Apparently Do Sleep, Even With Their Eyes Wide Open

Scientists observed sleep in draughtsboard sharks by analyzing the animals' metabolism and posture

The New Zealand sea lion is listed as endangered, and conservationists are working to ensure their population continues to grow. 

After Being Hunted to Near-Extinction, New Zealand Sea Lions Are Reclaiming the Mainland

These blubbery critters have made grand reappearances on golf courses, swimming pools and hiking trails, startling some New Zealanders

The 17-pound spud could earn the top spot in the Guiness Book of World Records.

At 17 Pounds, 'Doug' the Ugly Potato Could Be the World’s Biggest Spud

Colin and Donna Craig-Brown of New Zealand named the giant tuber and have been taking it for walks

New Zealand's long-tailed bats are about the size of a human thumb and weigh less than a tablespoon of sugar.

New Zealand's Bird of the Year Is... a Bat

The winged mammal is critically endangered and won the award to raise awareness about their existence and importance to the island ecosystem

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