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Connect with archaeology and ecology experts

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Experts and web conferences

Replay web conferences

The following questions from schools are answered by Louise and James in web conference 1:

  1. Why did people decide to do archaeology on Ahuahu in the first place?
  2. How will Ahuahu being pest-free affect people and the environment on the mainland?
  3. Are there any other threats of invasive insects affecting Great Mercury Island? If so, what are they?
  4. When an interesting artefact is found on Ahuahu, or anywhere, what process do archaeologists follow?
  5. Who ‘owns’ an artefact that is found?
  6. What inspired you to want to be archaeologists?
  7. Are there specific rules or regulations to follow on the island to help keep it pest-free?
  8. Has anyone ever accidentally brought a pest on to the island? And what did you do about it?
  9. For how long is it predicted that there will continue to be new discoveries on Ahuahu?
  10. Are there any plant pests on Ahuahu and if so, what is being done about these?
  11. How big is the Island (compared to other offshore islands in NZ)?
  12. What food do you think Captain Cook and his crew ate when they first were around Mercury Islands?
  13. How does the public have an effect on the island?
  14. Are there any new techniques for finding artefacts and identifying them?
  15. How did archaeologists first discover archaeological objects on the Island, how many artefacts have been found and what was the rarest or most important?
  16. How can the owners of Ahuahu trust people to be on the island e.g. if they want to bring their dogs, and why do they?

CORE Education · LEARNZ Ahuahu archaeology Podcast 1 of 3

The following questions from schools are answered by Louise and Greg in web conference 2:

  1. Out of all the plant life and animal life, how native is Great Mercury Island?
  2. With the 23 pā sites discovered, there must have been a lot of people living on the island, are there estimated numbers of the amount of early settlers?
  3. How have argentine ants affected Ahuahu?
  4. With archaeologists from the museum and Auckland University examining Tūhuru Ahuahu have they been able to answer questions for the local tangata whenua about their past? And vice versa? Tangata whenua being able to give insight to the researchers about what they know about their past.
  5. How can you trust that all visitors keep their boats clean and pest free?
  6. With the findings from the garden areas, were there any findings to suggest the early Māori settlers trialled having gardens at different places around the island or were the gardens all generally in the same areas i.e up high etc?
  7. What is the most interesting thing you have found out about early human habitation on Ahuahu?
  8. Was kūmara indigenous to New Zealand or did it come over from Polynesia?
  9. How are excavation sites on Ahuahu protected from being damaged?
  10. How do archaeologists know where to start looking for artefacts?
  11. Have you found any signs of musical instruments in your archaeological digs and, if so, what are they?
  12. How many stone tools have you found on Ahuahu?
  13. How do they train the dogs to detect different pest animals and plants?
  14. Citizen Science is important to projects like iNaturalist, where people can record wildlife. How can citizens help archaeology if it is not appropriate or damaging to go looking for artefacts?

CORE Education · LEARNZ Ahuahu archaeology Podcast 2 of 3

The following questions from schools are answered by Louise and Greg in web conference 3:

  1. How do you think all the history that has been explored about Ahuahu will be shared with others in the future?
  2. How long will it be until other native and protected animals come to live safely on Ahuahu?
  3. Can you tell us how you think archaeology will change or improve to help us learn more about NZ history?
  4. How else will you ensure that no more pests come onto the island? What if someone doesn't check their boat for stowaways?
  5. Can you describe how you think Ahuahu will look in 50 years, including the landscape, plants and animals?
  6. How will climate change affect Great Mercury Island?
  7. Are there any other goals or plans for Ahuahu, other than becoming pest free?
  8. Has pollution affected Ahuahu? Or do you think it will in the future?
  9. How do you personally view offshore islands and landscapes like Ahuahu, playing a role in our lives now and in the future?
  10. Is there any discussion about conserving the marine environment around Ahuahu as well?
  11. How did the island get its names?
  12. How do you know that you have only scrached they surface in archaeolgy?
  13. Whats the biggest sized pest you have found on the island?
  14. Have you found any strategies that Māori have used for gardening?
  15. What breeds of dogs do you use to sniff the boats looking for rats?

CORE Education · LEARNZ Ahuahu archaeology Podcast 3 of 3

Meet the experts

Meet Louise Furey: archaeologist

Find out more about Louise's work as an archaeologist.

Meet Greg van der Lee: pest detection dog handler

Find out more about Greg's work as a pest detection dog handler.

Meet Andrew the LEARNZ field trip teacher

Find out more about Andrew's work with LEARNZ.