Cook Strait as a field for ecological study: Sharks and rays of Cook Strait
From the ecologist's point of view, Cook Strait is a region of considerable value for the study of any marine group, because of the variety of physiographic and hydrographic features that are encompassed within a relatively small area. For an ecologist wishing to study the sharks and rays, Cook Strait is an even better proposition because at least 90% of the known New Zealand species occur in the area. This richness of the Cook Strait fauna as exemplified by the sharks and rays, is no doubt due in part to the variety of habitat, plus the fact that most sharks and rays are fairly tolerant of a wide range of habitat anyway.
However, before any ecological study can proceed far it is necessary that the animals concerned be known from a systematic point of view, and in the case of an ecological study of a whole group, that something more than the majority of them be known adequately in this respect.