Author(s): HUGH WILSON
Banks Peninsula, treasured by Christchurch city dwellers, peninsula residents and visitors from afar, is a unique volcanic landform jutting eastwards into the Pacific from the otherwise unsurprising Canterbury Plains. Once forested from side to side, and from sea to summits, the land was stripped of nearly all its trees, and much of its original wildlife, by two great waves of human colonisation, Polynesian and European. Much indigenous biodiversity remains, however, and native forest cover is increasing. This book traces what happened, and presents a concise and up-to-date summary of today’s landscape, vegetation and wildlife. The text is accompanied by stunning photographs and charming drawings, as well as by figures, tables and full checklists of species. The author is well qualified to write about the region’s flora, fauna, geology and ecology. For more than 20 years Hugh Wilson has worked on Hinewai, a privately owned and funded nature reserve that is freely open to the public. Before that he undertook a five-year detailed botanical survey of Banks Peninsula. Natural History of Banks Peninsula, now in this revised edition, is essential reading for locals and visitors alike. For the Banks Peninsula Conservation Trust, which sponsored its publication, the book is part of a mission to disseminate information and foster the protection and restoration of the region’s special natural values.