Course Content
Introduction
Learn why New Zealand species are unique and what machine learning is
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Aotearoa biodiversity
in this section of the activity you will learn why New Zealand fauna and flora are so unique and how we can make sure they are around for years to come.
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Create an app to identify animals
Learn how machine learning works and create a Scratch app that automatically identifies animals
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Assess your new skills
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Identifying photographs of animals – Kiwi or stoat?
About Lesson

New Zealand biodiveristy

For millions of years New Zealand had no land based mammalian predators. People arrived to New Zealand around 800 years ago. Since then, a number of non-native species have been introduced, including rats, cats, stoats and other terrestrial mammals. Nowadays, these introduced predators are threatening the survival of many New Zealand endemic species.

Endemic species are plants and animals that can only be found in one specific region. For example, kiwi, tuatara and tui are endemic to New Zealand.

Photographs of a kiwi, a tuatara and a kiwi

Photographs of three New Zealand endemic animals; kiwi, tuatara and tui.

Kiwi birds

Kiwi are an iconic bird of New Zealand. They are nocturnal, flightless and omnivorous. Kiwi eggs are six times bigger than an average bird of its size. In fact, female kiwi lay the biggest egg in proportion to body size of any other bird.

There are five recognised species of kiwi: brown, little spotted, great spotted, rowi and tokoeka. Unfortunately, all kiwi species need to be managed to prevent them from going extinct. The main threat for kiwi are introduced predators, particularly stoats.

Capture of a stoat

Stoat on grass

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