New Zealand Journal of Ecology (2001) 25(2): 77- 82

Is the amount and focus of ecological research in New Zealand sufficient to sustain indigenous biodiversity on private land?

Forum Article
David A. Norton  
  1. Conservation Research Group, School of Forestry, University of Canterbury, Private Bag 4800, Christchurch, New Zealand

By summarising ecological publications over the last 30 years, this paper provides an assessment of the amount and focus of New Zealand ecological research with respect to land tenure. While the number of published articles that deal with private land has increased over the last 30 years, the majority of New Zealand ecological research publications (65%) still focuses on public conservation lands, despite these only accounting for c. 30% of the land area. Even with the increasing emphasis in ecological research on private land there is still a need to better understand both the distribution of indigenous biodiversity and the interactions that occur between land management and indigenous biodiversity on private land. Such research is essential if we are to sustain indigenous biodiversity in lowland New Zealand.