The Invasion of New Zealand by People, Plants and Animals: the South Island

The Invasion of New Zealand by People, Plants and Animals: the South Island

The Invasion of New Zealand by People, Plants and Animals: the South Island

The Invasion of New Zealand by People, Plants and Animals: the South Island

Excerpt

This book is a report on a revolutionary change iii the character of a region, which occurred in a period of less than two centuries. One of the most important factors in the change was the invasion of the area by armies of plants and animals, which, with the help of man, mingled with or displaced the native flora and fauna. Since attention is focused on the complex multitude of elements associated in the area (the things of nature like soils and plants, rivers and mountains, climate and insects, together with man and his impedimenta of institutions, habits, and prejudices), it has seemed to be a useful study for a geographer. Most studies of man are more or less concerned with the milieu of human activity, but those which attempt to describe and explain the blending in area of human culture and natural habitat quality are, perhaps, peculiarly appropriate to geography. The writer would like to go further and hope that this study might be exemplary of the themes of historical geography. The precise taxonomic pigeonhole in which it is placed is, however, unimportant and may be Safely left to those with the necessary will and skill in dialectic.

The region treated is South Island, the largest territorial unit of the Dominion of New Zealand. Largely by way of this island did the invasion of New Zealand by exotic plants and animals occur; it was there that the dominant patterns and practices of land use, now common to the country as a whole, were developed. Because South Island is so little known to the world, and has such . . .

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