New Zealand is a sovereign island country in the southwestern Pacific Ocean. The country geographically comprises two main landmasses—the North Island, the South Island —and around 600 smaller islands. New Zealand is situated some 2,000 kilometres east of Australia across the Tasman Sea and 1,000 kilometres south of the Pacific island areas of New Caledonia and Tonga; because of its remoteness, it was one of the last lands to be settled by humans. During its long period of isolation, New Zealand developed a distinct biodiversity of animal and plant life; the country's varied topography and its sharp mountain peaks, such as the Southern Alps, owe much to the tectonic uplift of land and volcanic eruptions. New Zealand's capital city is Wellington. Sometime between 1250 and 1300, Polynesians settled in the islands that were named New Zealand and developed a distinctive Māori culture. In 1642, Dutch explorer Abel Tasman became the first European to sight New Zealand. In 1840, representatives of the United Kingdom and Māori chiefs signed the Treaty of Waitangi, which declared British sovereignty over the islands.
In 1841, New Zealand became a colony within the British Empire and in 1907 it became a dominion. Today, the majority of New Zealand's population of 4.9 million is of European descent. Reflecting this, New Zealand's culture is derived from Māori and early British settlers, with recent broadening arising from increased immigration; the official languages are English, Māori, NZ Sign Language, with English being dominant. A developed country, New Zealand ranks in international comparisons of national performance, such as quality of life, education, protection of civil liberties, economic freedom. New Zealand underwent major economic changes during the 1980s, which transformed it from a protectionist to a liberalised free-trade economy; the service sector dominates the national economy, followed by the industrial sector, agriculture. Nationally, legislative authority is vested in an elected, unicameral Parliament, while executive political power is exercised by the Cabinet, led by the prime minister Jacinda Ardern.
Queen Elizabeth II is the country's monarch and is represented by a governor-general Dame Patsy Reddy. In addition, New Zealand is organised into 11 regional councils and 67 territorial authorities for local government purposes; the Realm of New Zealand includes Tokelau. New Zealand is a member of the United Nations, Commonwealth of Nations, ANZUS, Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, ASEAN Plus Six, Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation, the Pacific Community and the Pacific Islands Forum. Dutch explorer Abel Tasman sighted New Zealand in 1642 and named it Staten Land "in honour of the States General", he wrote, "it is possible that this land joins to the Staten Land but it is uncertain", referring to a landmass of the same name at the southern tip of South America, discovered by Jacob Le Maire in 1616. In 1645, Dutch cartographers renamed the land Nova Zeelandia after the Dutch province of Zeeland. British explorer James Cook subsequently anglicised the name to New Zealand. Aotearoa is the current Māori name for New Zealand.
It is unknown whether Māori had a name for the whole country before the arrival of Europeans, with Aotearoa referring to just the North Island. Māori had several traditional names for the two main islands, including Te Ika-a-Māui for the North Island and Te Waipounamu or Te Waka o Aoraki for the South Island. Early European maps labelled the islands North and South. In 1830, maps began to use North and South to distinguish the two largest islands and by 1907 this was the accepted norm; the New Zealand Geographic Board discovered in 2009 that the names of the North Island and South Island had never been formalised, names and alternative names were formalised in 2013. This set the names as North Island or Te Ika-a-Māui, South Island or Te Waipounamu. For each island, either its English or Māori name can be used. New Zealand was one of the last major landmasses settled by humans. Radiocarbon dating, evidence of deforestation and mitochondrial DNA variability within Māori populations suggest New Zealand was first settled by Eastern Polynesians between 1250 and 1300, concluding a long series of voyages through the southern Pacific islands.
Over the centuries that followed, these settlers developed a distinct culture now known as Māori. The population was divided into iwi and hapū who would sometimes cooperate, sometimes compete and sometimes fight against each other. At some point a group of Māori migrated to Rēkohu, now known as the Chatham Islands, where they developed their distinct Moriori culture; the Moriori population was all but wiped out between 1835 and 1862 because of Taranaki Māori invasion and enslavement in the 1830s, although European diseases contributed. In 1862 only 101 survived, the last known full-blooded Moriori died in 1933; the first Europeans known to have reached New Zeala
In geography, a bight is a bend or curve in a coastline, river, or other geographical feature. It indicates a large, open bay only receding, it is distinguished from a sound by being shallower. Traditionally, explorers defined a bight as a bay that could be sailed out of on a single tack in a square-rigged sailing vessel, regardless of the direction of the wind; the term is derived from Old English byht and is not etymologically related to "bite". Bay of Campeche Bay of Plenty Bight of Benin Bight of Biafra or Bight of Bonny Canterbury Bight Flemish Bight German Bight or Heligoland Bight Great Australian Bight McKenzie Bight Mecklenburg Bight Mid-Atlantic Bight New York Bight Cameron Sound North Taranaki Bight Robson Bight Santa Monica Bay South Taranaki Bight Southern Bight Southern California Bight Trinity Bight and Labrador
Stuff.co.nz is a New Zealand news website published by Stuff Limited, a subsidiary of Australian company Fairfax Media Ltd. Stuff hosts the websites for Fairfax's New Zealand newspapers, including the country's second- and third-highest circulation daily newspapers, The Dominion Post and The Press, the highest circulation weekly, The Sunday Star-Times, it is a web portal to other Fairfax websites. As of March 2019, the website had an Alexa rank in New Zealand of 7; the former New Zealand media company Independent Newspapers Ltd, owned by News Corp Australia, launched Stuff on 27 June 2000 at a cybercafe in Auckland, after announcing its intention to go online more than a year earlier. The development of Stuff was supported and governed by, the INL Board, Mike Robson, INL CEO, Don Higgins, Corporate Development Manager. Mark Wierzbicki, founding Internet Business Manager, lead development and ongoing management of the Stuff site and team. Advertising agency Saatchi & Saatchi conceived the name "Stuff", INL had to buy the domain name from a cyber squatter.
In its first month, the site had 120,000 unique visitors. At the time, Mark Wierzbicki, described the name as a copywriter's dream, although he conceded that "it's not without risk if we stuff up." The start up website was built by a group of tech companies in Wellington led by project manager Bill Alp and founding CTO & engineering manager Will Everitt and used a software platform from News Corp Australia's news.com.au. On 30 June 2003, INL sold its publishing assets including The Dominion Post, The Press, the Stuff website to Fairfax Media. Fairfax upgraded the website in December 2006, again on 4 March 2009, adding the ability for visitors to personalise the homepage; the first mobile phone news service from Stuff began in 2003, in a partnership with Vodafone New Zealand. On 21 April 2009, Stuff launched a dedicated mobile site, m.stuff.co.nz. For larger news events, the site creates a dedicated section, such as for the Bain family murders retrial and the February 2011 Christchurch earthquake.
During the trial of Clayton Weatherston, press.co.nz, a subsidiary section on Stuff accidentally ran the headline "Guilty of Murder" the day before the jury delivered the verdict. The article was withdrawn, Fairfax executive editor Paul Thompson said it was a mistake "we take seriously."The site has won numerous awards including the Newspaper Publishers' Association awards "Best News Website" for 2010 and 2011. On 17 April 2013, to celebrate the passing of same-sex marriage in New Zealand, the colour of the Stuff logo was changed from black to the colours associated with the pride flag. On 1 February 2018 the parent company of Stuff.co.nz changed its name from Fairfax New Zealand Limited to Stuff Limited. Media of New Zealand Official website Archivestuff
Mount Taranaki, or Mount Egmont, is an active but quiescent stratovolcano in the Taranaki region on the west coast of New Zealand's North Island. Although the mountain is more referred to as Taranaki, it has two official names under the alternative names policy of the New Zealand Geographic Board; the 2,518 metres mountain is one of the most symmetrical volcanic cones in the world. There is Fanthams Peak, 1,966 metres, on the south side; because of its resemblance to Mount Fuji, Taranaki provided the backdrop for the movie The Last Samurai. For many centuries the mountain was called Taranaki by Māori; the Māori word tara means mountain peak, naki is thought to come from ngaki, meaning "shining", a reference to the snow-clad winter nature of the upper slopes. It was named Pukehaupapa and Pukeonaki by iwi who live in the region in ancient times. Captain Cook named it Mount Egmont on 11 January 1770 after John Perceval, 2nd Earl of Egmont, a former First Lord of the Admiralty who had supported the concept of an oceanic search for Terra Australis Incognita.
Cook described it as "of a prodigious height and its top cover'd with everlasting snow," surrounded by a "flat country... which afforded a good aspect, being clothed with wood and verdure". When Marc-Joseph Marion du Fresne made landfall off Taranaki on 25 March 1772 he named the mountain Pic Mascarin, he was unaware of Cook's earlier visit. It appeared as Mount Egmont on maps until 29 May 1986, when the Minister of Lands ruled that "Mount Taranaki" would be an alternative and equal official name; the Egmont name still applies to the national park that surrounds the peak and geologists still refer to the peak as the Egmont Volcano. Taranaki is geologically young, having commenced activity 135,000 years ago; the most recent volcanic activity was the production of a lava dome in the crater and its collapse down the side of the mountain in the 1850s or 1860s. Between 1755 and 1800, an eruption sent a pyroclastic flow down the mountain's northeast flanks, a moderate ash eruption occurred about 1755, of the size of Ruapehu's activity in 1995/1996.
The last major eruption occurred around 1655. Recent research has shown that over the last 9,000 years minor eruptions have occurred every 90 years on average, with major eruptions every 500 years. Taranaki is unusual in that it has experienced at least five of its major eruptions by the method of cone collapse. Few volcanoes have undergone more than one cone collapse; the vast volume of material involved in these collapses is reflected in the extensive ringplain surrounding the volcano. There is evidence of lahars being a common result of eruption. Much of the region is at risk from lahars. A volcanic event is not necessary for a lahar: earthquakes combined with heavy rain or snow could dislodge vast quantities of unstable layers resting on steep slopes. Many farmers live in the paths of such possible destructive events. Although volcanic eruptions are notoriously chaotic in their frequency, some scientists warn that a large eruption is "overdue". Research from Massey University indicates that significant seismic activity is again in the next 50 years.
Prevailing winds would blow ash east, covering much of the North Island, disrupting air routes, power transmission lines and local water supplies. Taranaki sits on the remains of three older volcanic complexes; the Indo-Australian Plate is moving relative to the magma source that feeds these volcanoes. This trend is reflected in Fanthams Peak, the newer secondary cone on the southeast side of Taranaki; the oldest volcanic remnants consist of a series of lava plugs: Paritutu rock, which forms part of New Plymouth's harbour, the Sugar Loaf Islands close offshore. These have been dated at 1.75 million years. On the coast 15 km southwest of New Plymouth is the Kaitake range, last active 500,000 years ago. Nearest to Taranaki is the Pouakai complex. Pouakai may have originated around the same time as Kaitake but remained active until about 240,000 years ago. Much of Pouakai's large ringplain was obliterated by the Egmont Volcano, the hills near Eltham being the only remnant to the south. According to Māori mythology, Taranaki once resided in the middle of the North Island, with all the other New Zealand volcanoes.
The beautiful Pihanga was coveted by all the mountains, a great battle broke out between them. Tongariro won the day, inflicted great wounds on the side of Taranaki, causing him to flee. Taranaki headed westwards, following Te Toka a Rahotu and forming the deep gorges of the Whanganui River, paused for a while, creating the depression that formed the Te Ngaere swamp heading north. Further progress was blocked by the Pouakai ranges, as the sun came up Taranaki became petrified in his current location; when Taranaki conceals himself with rainclouds, he is said to be crying for his lost love, during spectacular sunsets, he is said to be displaying himself to her. In turn, Tongariro's eruptions are said to be a warning to Taranaki not to return. In 1865 the mountain was confiscated from Māori by the New Zealand Government under the powers of the New Zealand Settlements Act 1863, ostensibly as a means of establishing and maintaining peace amid the Second Taranaki War; the legislation was framed with the intention of seizing and dividing up the land of Māori "in rebellion" and providing it as farmland for military settlers.
In 1839 the mountain had been climbed by naturalist Ernst Dieffenbach. During his initial ascent, he identified the fast-flowing streams as being well suited to water driven mills. Dieffenbach was emplo
Taranaki is a region in the west of New Zealand's North Island, administered by the Taranaki Regional Council. It is named after its main geographical feature, the stratovolcano of Mount Taranaki; the main centre is the city of New Plymouth. The New Plymouth District is home to more than 65 per cent of the population of Taranaki. New Plymouth is in North Taranaki along with Inglewood and Waitara. South Taranaki towns include Hawera, Stratford and Opunake. Since 2005, Taranaki has used the promotional brand "Like no other". Taranaki is on the west coast of the North Island, surrounding the volcanic peak of Mount Taranaki; the region covers an area of 7258 km². Itd large bays north-west and south-west of Cape Egmont are the prosaically named North Taranaki Bight and South Taranaki Bight. Mount Taranaki or Mount Egmont, the second highest mountain in the North Island, is the dominant geographical feature of the region. A Māori legend says that Taranaki lived with the Tongariro and Ruapehu mountains of the central North Island but fled to its current location after a battle with Tongariro.
A near-perfect cone, it last erupted in the mid-18th century. The mountain and its immediate surrounds form Egmont National Park. Māori had called the mountain Taranaki for many centuries, Captain James Cook renamed it Egmont after the Earl of Egmont, the retired First Lord of the Admiralty who had encouraged his expedition; the mountain has two alternative official names, "Mount Taranaki" and "Mount Egmont". The region is exceptionally fertile thanks to generous rainfall and rich volcanic soil. Dairy farming predominates, with Fonterra's Whareroa milk factory just outside of Hawera producing the largest volume of dairy ingredients from a single factory anywhere in the world. There are oil and gas deposits in the region, both on- and off-shore; the Maui gas field off the south-west coast has provided most of New Zealand's gas supply and once supported two methanol plants, at Motunui. Fuel and fertiliser is produced at a well complex at Kapuni and a number of smaller land-based oilfields. With the Maui field nearing depletion, new offshore resources have been developed: The Tui field, 50 km south of Hawera, with reserves of 50,000,000 barrels of oil and the Pohokura gas field, 4.5 km north of Waitara.
The way the land mass projects into the Tasman Sea with northerly and southerly exposures, results in many excellent surfing and windsurfing locations, some of them considered world-class. Taranaki has a population of 119,600 as of Statistics New Zealand's June 2018, 2.4 percent of New Zealand's population. It is the tenth most populous region of New Zealand; the median age of Taranaki's population is 39.9 years, two years above the New Zealand median. Around 16.2 percent of the population is aged 65 or over while 21.1 percent is aged under 15. In 2013, there were 95.7 males for every hundred females in Taranaki. Just under half the residents live in New Plymouth, with Hawera being the only other town in the region with a population over 10,000; the region has had a strong Māori presence for centuries. The local iwi include Ngāti Mutunga, Ngāti Maru, Ngāti Ruanui, Taranaki, Te Āti Awa, Nga Rauru, Ngāruahinerangi and Ngāti Tama. Around 50.2 percent of Taranaki's population affiliate with Christianity and 2.7 percent affiliate with non-Christian religions, while 43.8 percent are irreligious.
Catholicism is the largest Christian denomination in Taranaki with 15.5 percent affiliating, while Anglicanism is the second-largest with 13.5 percent affiliating. The area became home to a number of Māori tribes from the 13th century. From about 1823 the Māori began having contact with European whalers as well as traders who arrived by schooner to buy flax. In March 1828 Richard "Dicky" Barrett set up a trading post at Ngamotu. Barrett and his companions, who were armed with muskets and cannon, were welcomed by the Āti Awa tribe because of their worth assisting in their continuing wars with Waikato Māori. Following a bloody encounter at Ngamotu in 1832, most of the 2000 Āti Awa living near Ngamotu, as well as Barrett, migrated south to the Kapiti region and Marlborough. In late 1839 Barrett returned to Taranaki to act as a purchasing agent for the New Zealand Company, which had begun on-selling the land to prospective settlers in England with the expectation of securing its title. Barrett claimed to have negotiated the purchase of an area extending from Mokau to Cape Egmont, inland to the upper reaches of the Whanganui River including Mt Taranaki.
A deed of sale included New Plymouth and all the coastal lands of North Taranaki, including Waitara. European settlement at New Plymouth began with the arrival of the William Bryan in March 1841. European expansion beyond New Plymouth, was prevented by Māori opposition to selling their land, a sentiment that deepened as links strengthened with the King Movement. Tension over land ownership continued to mount, leading to the outbreak of war at Waitara in March 1860. Although the pressure for the sale of the Waitara block resulted from the colonists' hunger for land in Taranaki, the greater issue fuelling the conflict was the Government's desire to impose British administration and civilisation on the Māori; the war was fought by more than 3500 imperial troops brought in from Australia, as well as volunteer soldiers and militia, against Māori forces that fluctuated from a few hundred and to 1500. Total losses among the imperial and militia troops are estimated to have been 238, while Māori casualties totalled about 200.
An uneasy truce was negotiated a year only to be broken in April 1863 as tensions over land occupation boiled over again
The North Island officially named Te Ika-a-Māui, is one of the two main islands of New Zealand, separated from the larger but much less populous South Island by Cook Strait. The island's area is 113,729 square kilometres, it has a population of 3,749,200. Twelve main urban areas are in the North Island. From north to south, they are Whangarei, Hamilton, Rotorua, New Plymouth, Hastings, Palmerston North, Wellington, the capital, located at the south-west extremity of the island. About 77% of New Zealand's population lives in the North Island. Although the island has been known as the North Island for many years, in 2009 the New Zealand Geographic Board found that, along with the South Island, the North Island had no official name. After a public consultation, the board named the island North Island or Te Ika-a-Maui in October 2013. In prose, the two main islands of New Zealand are called the North Island and the South Island, with the definite articles, it is normal to use the preposition in rather than on, for example "Hamilton is in the North Island", "my mother lives in the North Island".
Maps, headings and adjectival expressions use North Island without the. According to Māori mythology, the North and South Islands of New Zealand arose through the actions of the demigod Māui. Māui and his brothers were fishing from their canoe when he caught a great fish and pulled it from the sea. While he was not looking his brothers fought over the fish and chopped it up; this great fish became the North Island and thus a Māori name for the North Island is Te Ika-a-Māui. The mountains and valleys are believed to have been formed as a result of Māui's brothers' hacking at the fish; until the early 20th Century, an alternative Māori name for the North Island was Aotearoa. In present usage, Aotearoa is a collective Māori name for New Zealand as a whole; the sub-national GDP of the North Island was estimated at US$102.863 billion in 2003, 79% of New Zealand's national GDP. The North Island is divided into two ecoregions within the temperate broadleaf and mixed forests biome, the northern part being the Northland temperate kauri forest, the southern part being the North Island temperate forests.
The island has an extensive flora and bird population, with numerous National Parks and other protected areas. Nine local government regions cover the North Island and all its adjacent islands and territorial waters. Northland Auckland Waikato Bay of Plenty Gisborne Taranaki Manawatu-Wanganui Hawkes Bay Wellington The North Island has a larger population than the South Island, with the country's largest city and the capital, accounting for nearly half of it. There are 28 urban areas in the North Island with a population of 10,000 or more: Healthcare in the North Island is provided by fifteen District Health Boards. Organised around geographical areas of varying population sizes, they are not coterminous with the Local Government Regions. Bay of Islands Bay of Plenty Hauraki Gulf Hawke Bay Ninety Mile Beach North Taranaki Bight South Taranaki Bight Lake Taupo Waikato River Whanganui River Coromandel Peninsula Northland Peninsula Cape Palliser Cape Reinga East Cape North Cape Egmont National Park Tongariro National Park Waipoua Kauri Forest Whanganui National Park and many forest parks of New Zealand Mount Ruapehu Mount Taranaki Volcanic Plateau Waitomo Caves Taumatawhakatangihangakoauauotamateapokaiwhenuakitanatahu List of islands of New Zealand Media related to North Island, New Zealand at Wikimedia Commons North Island travel guide from Wikivoyage
The Whanganui Chronicle is New Zealand's oldest newspaper. Based in Whanganui, it celebrated 160 years of publishing in September 2016. Local resident Henry Stokes first proposed the paper for Petre, as the town was called, but initial publication was held back by lack of equipment; as no printing press was available, Stokes approached the technical master at Wanganui Collegiate School, Rev. Charles Nicholls, together they constructed a maire wood and iron makeshift printing press, on which, with the help of the staff and pupils of the school, the first edition of the Wanganui Chronicle was printed on 18 September 1856; the motto of the paper, printed at the top of the editorial column, was "Verite Sans Peur," French for "Truth without Fear." The paper was sold fortnightly, at a price of six pence. In 1866 the Chronicle went tri-weekly, in 1871 began publishing daily and has done so since; the paper was edited by Gilbert Carson from 1875 onwards. In the 1880s Carson's sister Margaret Bullock worked as a reporter and assistant editor for the paper, along with Laura Jane Suisted, was one of the first female parliamentary correspondents in New Zealand.
The woman editor for a time in the 1920s using her birth name Iris Wilkinson published poetry and novels as Robin Hyde, is now "acknowledged as a major figure in New Zealand twentieth-century culture". The Chronicle's rival from 1867 onward was The Evening Herald, founded by John Ballance; the ownership of the two daily papers merged in the 1970s, in 1986 the Herald became a free weekly renamed the Wanganui Midweek. The Chronicle is Whanganui's only daily newspaper. On Monday, 10 September 2018, the paper changed its name to the Whanganui Chronicle, to correspond with the corrected Māori spelling of Whanganui district, made official in December 2015