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The Maori were the first to establish New Zealand, naming it the "Land of the Long White Cloud".
Rudyard Kipling called New Zealand
the "Eighth Wonder of the World".
New Zealand is famed for it's Great Walks of the World. Some trails limit the number
of hikers which keeps human impact to a minimum. We can help arrange these for our travelers.
NZ was the first western
democracy to give women the vote.
NZ'er Edmund Hillary was the first person to climb Mt Everest.
NZ is the home of bungee jumping.
Zealand has won more Olympic gold medals, per capita, than any other country.
NZ has the worlds largest flightless parrot (kakapo),
the oldest reptile (tuatara), the biggest earthworms, the smallest bats (the only native land mammals), the heaviest insect (a weta),
some of the oldest trees, and many of the rarest birds, insects, and plants in the world.
Prior to European arrival, New Zealand had
no predatory animals making it a paradise for birds... many of them flightless.
Did you Know?
The Kea is a semi-nocturnal parrot native to the alpine mountains of New Zealand. The Kea is the only known parrot
in the world to live in the alpine regions. The Kea is also known as the clown of the mountains, because of its playful nature and
reputation for tearing the rubber sealing from cars, presumably for fun.
The Kea has also been known as the feathered wolf because
of its reputation for attacking and killing farmers' livestock (predominantly sheep). The Kea is the only known species of parrot
to attack and kill other animals, though this is generally rare and probably restricted to sick or trapped animals.
They are probably the most active, intelligent, destructive and playful aviary birds.
The Kea is now a protected species, but
was once hunted for a bounty paid by farmers for killing their sheep. At one time ten shillings were being offered per Kea beak, today
that would be the equivalent of sixty-five dollars.
They were not fully protected until 1986, when farmers were persuaded to
give up their legal right to shoot any Kea that tampered with property or livestock, in exchange the government agreed to investigate
any reports of such problem birds and have them safely removed from the land.
Despite sufferings incurred at the hands of humans
the Kea remains a very friendly, playful human-loving bird.
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"As the World Once was....
Pure, Unspoiled, and Full of Wonder"
Interesting Points about New Zealand:
New Zealand is 1/2
the size of the State of California.
In 1986, the United Nations declared parts of New Zealand as a "World Heritage
The two islands which make up New Zealand, is about the size of Japan, and yet is populated with only 4 million people.
New Zealand was the last major landmass to be discovered by humans.