bringing the TAMATEA vision into classrooms



creating a

Virtual Fieldtrip into Tamatea Dusky Sound

We are excited to work with LEARNZ and Department of Conservation to bring the Tamatea Dusky Sound Restoration Project into New Zealand classrooms to inspire kids to look after what they call home.

Our vision is for Tamatea/Dusky Sound to be one of the most intact ecosystems on Earth, and New Zealand's largest ‘bio bank’ – a source of endangered native species that can be sent to pest free locations throughout the country.

It's a big vision and it will need the next generation to be just as passionate about it as we are..

We're also running a competition for two kids and their guardians to join us onboard for this special field trip.

Expedition Fiordland - Putting the ECO into ecosystem


Term 3

14th - 19th of September 2020

What is it about ?


Your adventure in the deep south will connect you with the Tamatea vision and give you ideas on how you might work to restore an ecosystem near your place.

enrol for the

virtual fieldtrip

(teachers only)


our competition


JOIN Expedition Fiordland LIVE

Be one of two lucky kids to join us onboard Flightless with your guardian, mum or dad from the 14th - 19th of September 2020.. ex Te Anau including two helicopter flights to and from the vessel, all food and activities included.

T&C apply | Child age 10-16 | Competition runtime 1st July - 31st August 2020 | Winner by panel decision


How to enter

  • Why do you care about your local ecosystem?
  • How can YOU help look after one of your local ecosystems?
  • What species or places near you need looking after?



  • Take your phone and make a 1 minute video
  • Post it on Instagram (make sure your settings are on PUBLIC)
  • #conservationheroes2020
  • Get your guardian, mum or dad to fill out the form below
Fill out my online form.
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To prepare for this field trip, LEARNZ content will support inquiry into:


  • The unique natural and cultural history of Fiordland
  • How ecosystems work: the difference between healthy and unhealthy ecosystems
  • Figuring out the differences between marine and forest ecosystems
  • The formation of Fiordland
  • Special Tamatea / Dusky Sound creatures such as mokomoko / lizards, and pekapeka / bats
  • How a 'biobank' works
  • Controlling predators with smart technologies
  • Explore how anyone can contribute to the Predator Free 2050 ProgrammeIslands as sanctuaries
  • How tourism can be a valuable partner in conservation
  • Track etiquette and following environmental care codes



During the field trip you will:


  • Follow Andrew on Twitter during the journey
  • Fly by helicopter to join the MV Flightless
  • Check your own equipment clothing and footwear to make sure you're not carrying weed seeds or pests
  • Join a small group of volunteers in restoring Fiordland's ecosystem
  • Sail on board the 27m Flightless, an ex NZ Navy vessel
  • Take a closer look at flora and fauna and use technology to help you identify species
  • Choose a native species and explore its role (its 'job') in the ecosystem
  • Go ashore and stand where Captain Cook shared the first breath with local Māori and cruise where he cruised in the Resolution in 1773
  • Visit the hut and bird enclosure sites of conservation pioneer Richard Henry
  • See examples of how everything is interconnected and how small changes can impact upon all living things
  • Look at the effect tourism is having on Tamatea / Dusky Sound
  • Spot signs of unwanted animals and plants: stoats, rats, possums, deer and plant pests such as gorse
  • Check tracking tunnels, pick up trap data and motion camera cards as well as set your own traps on Long Island to become part of the Tamatea Restoration
  • Get to know the people making a difference and the work they do



After the field trip:


  • Identify a local natural ecosystemLearn about what threatens your local ecosystem
  • Make a statement about the importance of your local ecosystem
  • Find out what others think
  • Do some research to find out how a local ecosystem near your place came to be the way it is. What do you think it was like before humans arrived? What action might be needed to restore it to that pre-human condition?
  • Plan a visit to your local ecosystem
  • Find out if there are people working to help restore your local ecosystem. Can you get involved?
  • Find out about options for volunteering on conservation projectsInvestigate qualifications and careers in conservation
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Kids will get to learn about the wild and remote Fiordland coast, a place so geographically isolated, it is one of the least modified parts of mainland New Zealand. That place is Tamatea / Dusky Sound. It has a long and fascinating history: long ago Māori hunted and fished in the area and Captain Cook landed there in 1773; New Zealand's first conservation reserve was set up here in the late 18th century by our first conservation ranger, Richard Henry.

Not far from where you live will be a natural ecosystem. Is it a forest ecosystem, a grassland ecosystem or a marine ecosystem? You are also part of a human ecosystem: is yours a rural or urban ecosystem? Every ecosystem has living parts like plants and animals and nonliving parts such as weather, earth, water, sun, soil, climate and atmosphere.

On this field trip you will join a group working hard to help turn Tamatea / Dusky Sound into one of the most intact ecosystems on Earth. At the same time, you will help create a 'bio bank', a source of endangered native species that can be sent to pest free locations throughout New Zealand. Your adventure in the deep south will give you ideas on how you might work to restore an ecosystem near your place.

The Fieldtrip

Expedition Fiordland

enrol for the

virtual fieldtrip

(teachers only)