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Expedition Fiordland

Travel online to Tamatea Dusky Sound in Fiordland on board the vessel MV Flightless to experience restoration of one of the most remote and ecologically important areas of Aotearoa.

Discover more
Background reading, images, narrations, keywords and quizzes.

Connect with conservationists
Insights into people, their careers and replay web conferences.

Tamatea field trip videos.

Explore the field trip videos
Videos and more showcasing places, people, ideas and initiatives on this field trip.

Take the Google Earth for Web tour of Tamatea Dusky Sound
A virtual tour of the field trip with GIS mapping, 3D locations, images, daily diaries and video.

About this trip

Join a group working hard to help turn Tamatea into one of the most intact ecosystems on Earth. This restoration work will help create a 'bio bank', a source of endangered native species that can be sent to pest free locations throughout New Zealand. This adventure in the deep south will give you ideas on how you might work to restore an ecosystem near your place.

Fiordland is a region in the south-west corner of Te Wai Pounamu, the South Island. Fiordland has fourteen fiords or sounds and the largest is Tamatea, Dusky Sound.

The fiords that give the area its name are troughs carved by glaciers thousands of years ago. This is a remote and rugged land with high rainfall, dense forest, and steep mountains. Recognised as a World Heritage Area, Fiordland is also the largest National Park in Aotearoa. The area provides a variety of habitats for many endangered plants and animals.

Travel online with LEARNZ to Tamatea Dusky Sound in Fiordland to:

  • Take a helicopter ride to join the MV Flightless, a converted naval ship
  • Discover the history and many taonga in the remote fiords of Fiordland
  • Explore the islands of Tamatea and look for evidence that they are predator-free
  • Visit the hut and bird enclosure sites of conservation pioneer Richard Henry
  • Spot signs of unwanted animals such as stoats, rats, possums, and deer as well as plant pests like gorse
  • Check tracking tunnels, pick up trap data and motion camera cards
  • Follow Maia, Shelley's mascot
  • Get to know what the volunteers and other people are doing to restore Fiordland's ecosystem.


This online field trip supports a STEM-based, cross curricular approach to teaching and learning. Participation encourages curiosity, citizen-science and student inquiry. Access curriculum links and resources plus a glossary.


United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.

United Nations SDG 15This trip reflects the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), especially Goal 15: Life on land: Protect, restore and promote sustainable use of terrestrial ecosystems, sustainably manage forests, combat desertification, and halt and reverse land degradation and halt biodiversity loss.

Ministry of Education


Pure Salt