Our field course begins with the exploration of volcanic and predator-free islands in northern New Zealand. Here, amongst colorful parrots and rare forest birds, we will hone our species identification skills and examine concepts in insular ecolog...
Our field course begins with the exploration of volcanic and predator-free islands in northern New Zealand. Here, amongst colorful parrots and rare forest birds, we will hone our species identification skills and examine concepts in insular ecology. As we travel south through the volcanically active center of the North Island, we will investigate the alpine ecology, geology and human history of the region. Our cultural and ecological exploration of the region will continue as we paddle the Whanganui River with local Maori.
Once off the river we will travel to a predator-free island in the Wellington Harbor and then across the Cook Strait to South Island. While on South Island we will hike through the mountains of the Kahurangi, travel the rugged west coast, and explore the alpine valleys of the majestic Southern Alps. Towards the end of the class we will work and hike among the lush Fiordlands before ending the class in breathtaking Queenstown. Throughout, our field study team members will take part in key conservation and restoration projects. Together we will closely investigate natural resource management policies, and work with local organizations on issues concerning animal reintroduction and invasive species management. By the close of the program, each of us will have gained an intimate understanding of New Zealand's fascinating ecology and cultural history, its historical and current environmental challenges, and the conservation and restoration efforts being taken to address them.
Location: Auckland, New Zealand Accommodations: Primarily camping, occasional youth hostel or rural lodge Credits: 15 quarter credits or 10 semester credits