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Heritage Collections - Kohikohinga Tukuihotanga
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Natural wonders Project
Taranaki has unique natural history. From volcanic eruptions to coastal erosion, our landscape has changed drastically over time.

Once you could walk on land from Taranaki to Nelson but now Taranaki sits as an isolated bight poking out from the west coast of the North Island. The various ecosystems that exist in Taranaki make for a huge biodiversity of plants and animals with each species playing a vital role in making the region the special place it is.

Puke Ariki's Natural Sciences Collection contains many of these fascinating animals along with fossils of species that no longer exist. The collection was held in the museum store for many years, away from public view - but the Natural Wonders Project, with support from Taranaki Regional Council, has brought it out into public view.

The Project saw every item in the collection re-catalogued, photographed and put onto our online catalogue so it can be accessed easily by researchers and the general public.  Puke Ariki's Natural Sciences Collection is now a revealing showcase of Taranaki's natural environment.


insects
This collection of fascinating mini creatures is the legacy of Dr Ken Fox.

Birds
The Natural Sciences Collection has a huge array of birds - including the iconic kiwi.
fossils
Fossils rock! They give us a fascinating glimpse of creatures from the past.