New Zealand is an island country that is made up of two major islands called the North Island and the South Island. It is situated in the South Pacific. The capital city is Wellington but the largest city is Auckland.
Most people in New Zealand speak English but the Maori language is also spoken there by about 4% of the population. After the Second World War, Maori were discouraged to speak their language but in 1987 their language was declared as official language too. Many places now have dual Maori and English names.
Maori were the first people who came to New Zealand from Polynesia. New Zealand was first discovered by Europeans in 1642 when Dutch sailor Abel Tasman arrived. He left New Zealand because several members of his crew were killed by Maoris. Then in 1769 English Captain James Cook arrived and mapped the land.
Queen Elizabeth II is officially Queen of New Zealand. She is represented in New Zealand by a Governor General. New Zealand is a country that has two official anthems: “God save the Queen” and “God defend New Zealand”.
In New Zealand there are many unique species of animals. Some of them cannot be found anywhere else in the world. The reason for this that New Zealand was cut off from the rest of the land on Earth for 80 million years.
The oldest living kind of reptile is the native New Zealand Tuatara. Tuataras can live up to 300 years. It is estimated that Tuataras can be traced back 190 million years to the Mesozoic era.
Another native bird of New Zealand (the Moa) was one of the largest birds in history – that was up to 3.6m tall and weighed about 300kg. They don´t live anymore because they were hunted by the Maoris. New Zealand's national symbol is a nocturnal flightless bird that is called the kiwi. The weta is the largest and heaviest insect in the world.
The term ‘Kiwi’ is also used as a nickname for a New Zealander.
Location and geography:
History : New Zealand was first found by
Maori’s, New has a very strong history indeed. There was a treaty signed between
Maori’s and European’s.
First people: Maori’s
First Europeans: Abel Tasman and Captin James Cook
Official head: Queen Elizabeth II
/ Prime Minister: John Key
God Save the Queen,
and God Defined New Zealand
Wildlife in New Zealand:
Species and unique animals:
Tuatara’s, Kiwi’s, and reptiles.
Nickname for New Zealanders: