Scientist pieces together details of underwater landslides

Scientist pieces together details of underwater landslides

New information about landslides that occur on the seafloor off New Zealand’s east coast will help scientists better understand why and where they happen, and the types of threats they pose.

The week it snowed everywhere

The week it snowed everywhere

Novel handwriting recognition project casts new light on historic weather data.NIWA climate scientist Dr Andrew Lorrey says the project has the potential to revolutionise how historic data can be used.

‘Blooming heck’ - Microalgae feature in latest biodiversity memoir

‘Blooming heck’ - Microalgae feature in latest biodiversity memoir

A group of microscopic algae that form vast aquamarine blooms off the east coast is the subject of NIWA’s latest Biodiversity Memoir.Measuring as small as three microns (0.003 mm), powerful scanning electron microscopes are needed to look at the algae in detail.

The Glorious Victories of Trans Athletes Are Shaking Up Sports

The Glorious Victories of Trans Athletes Are Shaking Up Sports

The International Olympic Committee has more granular rules: Transgender women can compete in the women’s category as long as their blood testosterone levels have been maintained below 10 nano moles per liter for a minimum of 12 months.

Leopard seal Owha injured in Auckland Harbour

Leopard seal Owha injured in Auckland Harbour

NIWA Marine Mammal Biologist Dr Krista Hupman says photos of Owha’s injuries taken by members of , a non-for profit organisation set up to conduct research and raise awareness of leopard seals in New Zealand waters, showed blood coming from Owha’s nostrils and smeared on her face.

Fish snack on microplastics

Fish snack on microplastics

Microplastics are being fed to snapper, New Zealand’s most popular recreational fish species, at NIWA’s aquaculture research facility near Whangarei in a bid to establish some baseline data about how fish are being affected.

Planning an ocean observation network

Planning an ocean observation network

NIWA coastal physicist Dr Joanne O’Callaghan is part of a working group aiming to establish a collaborative New Zealand ocean observing network.Climate change is making its presence felt in New Zealand waters with marine heatwaves, increasing ocean acidification and sea level rise.”.

Fiordland air samples revealing carbon secrets

Fiordland air samples revealing carbon secrets

As part of CarbonWatch NZ, NIWA atmospheric scientist Dr Peter Sperlich is sending specially designed glass flasks on fortnightly trips from Wellington to Fiordland to collect air samples that are then analysed in Wellington, Taiwan and the US.

NIWA UV research reinforces success of Montreal Protocol

NIWA UV research reinforces success of Montreal Protocol

On the eve of the 30th anniversary since the Montreal Protocol came into force, new research by NIWA scientists reinforces its reputation as the world’s most successful environmental treaty.

Rare weather phenomenon possible

Rare weather phenomenon possible

Called a Sudden Stratospheric Warming (SSW), it occurs when the temperature of the stratosphere (30-50km above ground) over the South Pole rises by more than 25ᵒC.The Southern Hemisphere is characterised by a cold Antarctic continent surrounded by relatively warm seas.

5G and NZ weather forecasting

5G and NZ weather forecasting

Dr Schmidt, who is also the New Zealand representative for the World Meteorological Organization’s Global Climate Observing System, said the international science community was working with governments to protect radio frequencies vital to earth observations.

New Zealand to have world-leading hazard risk modelling tool

New Zealand to have world-leading hazard risk modelling tool

EQC, GNS Science and NIWA have joined forces to further develop world-leading natural hazards risk modelling for New Zealand. Mr Morgan said the new partnership will broaden use of RiskScape to include more government, council and infrastructure company users, enabling more people to get a better understanding of the potential costs of natural hazards.

Seasonal records set to fall like autumn leaves

Seasonal records set to fall like autumn leaves

With just a few days of autumn left, prolonged warm weather and less rain than normal means some spots across New Zealand are heading for the record books. • Taupo – on track for 2nd warmest Autumn – records began 1949.

Owha and her friends awarded citizenship

Owha and her friends awarded citizenship

It’s a huge step forward for the leopard seal according to NIWA cetacean biologist Dr Krista Hupman, who largely attributes this success to Owha who made the Waitemata Harbour her home in 2012. NIWA Cetacean Biologist/Ecologist Dr Krista Hupman has helped getting leopard seals a new residential status in New Zealand waters.

Scientists hoping to solve great eel mystery

Scientists hoping to solve great eel mystery

NIWA freshwater scientists are pinning their hopes of solving an age-old mystery on 10 female longfin eels who are about to begin an epic journey to their spawning grounds somewhere in the Pacific Ocean.

Emirates Team New Zealand seek NIWA’s technical edge

Emirates Team New Zealand seek NIWA’s technical edge

“Weather is such a vital element of a successful America’s Cup campaign,” said Emirates Team New Zealand CEO Grant Dalton.

Scientists reach new understanding of main threats to Hector’s and Māui dolphins

Scientists reach new understanding of main threats to Hector’s and Māui dolphins

The 18-month scientific study has discovered: The dolphins can breed earlier, live longer and are capable of faster population growth than previously thought, which makes them more resilient to human threats Scientists can accurately predict where they live using satellite data on seawater turbidity (cloudiness) and the distribution of their main prey The importance of non-fishery threats had been underestimated, including the parasite causing toxoplasmosis, which is spread by cats.

Meet the Mysterious Freshwater Eels of New Zealand

Meet the Mysterious Freshwater Eels of New Zealand

Many of New Zealand’s rivers are built up with hydropower dams, and Jellyman says that it’s common for young eels to find themselves trapped below these structures, much like salmon.

March temperatures more evidence of a warming climate

March temperatures more evidence of a warming climate

NIWA principal scientist climate Dr Brett Mullan says the high March temperatures were consistent with our warming climate and when seen in context with other warm months a clear trend was evident.

International climate experts gather in Wellington

International climate experts gather in Wellington

“NIWA depends on the Unified Model for its forecasting and predictions of New Zealand’s weather and climate and it will be more critical for us in the future as we adapt to a changing climate.” Dr Dean says the Unified Model provides a platform for collaboration that enables development beyond what would be possible by a single organisation.

Scientists return from Antarctic voyage

Scientists return from Antarctic voyage

The 21 scientists, supported by 19 crew, have been focusing on gathering baseline information to monitor the year-old Ross Sea Marine Protected Area (MPA). Voyage leader and NIWA scientist Dr Richard O’Driscoll said good weather and a general lack of sea ice enabled science work to continue uninterrupted.

They were defrosting leopard seal poo...you won't believe what happened next!

They were defrosting leopard seal poo...you won't believe what happened next!

That’s why a local vet, out checking on the health of a skinny leopard seal resting on Oreti Beach, Invercargill, picked up a scat sample, packaged it up and sent it to Dr Hupman who popped it in the freezer. For more information on leopard seals and how to report a sighting see www.leopardseals.org

Scientists confirm warming seas around New Zealand

Scientists confirm warming seas around New Zealand

That may not sound like a huge amount but slightly stronger warming of about 0.4ᵒC per decade off the east coast of Tasmania has resulted in significant changes to ecosystems which has led to concerns of similar impacts in New Zealand,” Dr Sutton says.

Can a leopard seal change its spots?

Can a leopard seal change its spots?

Dr Krista Hupman, a NIWA cetacean biologist who studies leopard seals, says the species is now so common in New Zealand waters, it needs reclassifying.

Underwater magician

Underwater magician

Based at Bream Bay, Whangarei, Crispin is also an acclaimed underwater photographer and the recipient of numerous photography awards. Chasing paper nautilus was our first New Zealand Geographic project and it was a toughie! We have several projects on the go in New Zealand.

Update on El Niño

Update on El Niño

An abnormal El Niño weather event is looking likely for New Zealand over summer, according to NIWA meteorologist Ben Noll. During summer in a typical El Niño, New Zealand has stronger and/or more frequent winds from the west, leading to an elevated risk of drier-than-normal conditions in the east of both islands and above normal rainfall in the west.

Shark survival tale

Shark survival tale

Warrick Lyon, a NIWA fisheries technician, says the study is heading to the Pacific to test survival rates for sharks treated differently – such as those where hooks are not removed and where long pieces of monofilament fishing line are left attached.

Scientists listen to the sound of photosynthesising seaweeds

Scientists listen to the sound of photosynthesising seaweeds

While measuring the sound produced by the bubbles could be used as a cheap alternative to estimate algal cover and ecosystem health in coral reefs, NIWA scientists say there is also potential to use it to learn more about New Zealand kelp forests.

Handwritten files provide sediment treasure chest

Handwritten files provide sediment treasure chest

Dr Bostock first started work on the database 10 years ago when she was looking for information for a project that required her to look up archived paper files dating back to the 1970s and then digitise them.

Carbon research grant “exceptional moment” for scientist

Carbon research grant “exceptional moment” for scientist

Leading the team is NIWA scientist Dr Sara Mikaloff-Fletcher, whose project builds on a pilot study using atmospheric data that uncovered a striking revelation about how much carbon was absorbed by New Zealand’s indigenous forests.